WHO WE ARE
At Entrepreneur First (“EF”), we believe that a small number of exceptional people will have an extraordinary impact by creating the technology companies which shape the future in ways we cannot yet imagine. We also believe that for many of these individuals, entrepreneurship is not an obvious or entirely legible career path.
We exist to identify, and amplify the impact of, these individuals. We do this via our unique approach to company creation, which sees us identify and work with outliers before they even know they’re outliers, right through to the day they prove it. We call this Talent Investing.
The companies built at EF are now worth over $10bn. They include Tractable (a computer vision unicorn), Magic Pony Technology (AI, acquired by Twitter for a reported $150m), Omnipresent (future of work, valued at $700m after 2.5 years), Ochre Bio (biotech), Dishpatch (food delivery, raised Series A from a16z after 6 months), Opply (supply chain), Voltz (DeFi), and many more.
EF is funded and backed by some of the world's best founders and investors, including Patrick and John Collison (Stripe), Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn), Tom Blomfield (GoCardless and Monzo) and Demis Hassabis (Google Deepmind).
We’re looking for the next generation of Talent Investors to join us, and enable the world’s most exceptional people to fulfil their potential.
We are looking for a Principal to lead an investment unit that will find and invest in exceptional individuals. You will be accountable for finding and cultivating relationships with these individuals, investing in them at EF, and maximising outcomes for them and the companies they build. You will have full ownership and the opportunity to see them from the beginning (building a relationship with these potential individuals) to the end (company building and investment outcomes).
Talent Investors come in many guises, but it’s essential that through your education, work and/or side projects you have been exposed to exceptionally talented people. You’ll likely have ~4+ years of experience, ideally with exposure to early stage company building and/or VC. We expect this role to be intense, fast-paced and entrepreneurial, with an opportunity for enormous impact and upside.
WHAT YOU’LL DO
1. Build and lead a team to develop, and execute, a thesis on where and how to find non-obviously exceptional founder talent
At EF we focus on people with exceptional talent who are too early in their careers to have generated achievements that would make them obviously exceptional founders. This requires you to think, and act, creatively when it comes to finding these people. You will need to work with your team to develop and test your hypotheses about where and how these people aggregate. This will involve identifying particular communities or institutions which are talent-dense (we call these “talent clusters”) and/or potential signals of exceptionalism (e.g. looking for winners of interesting prizes or scholarships).
2. Build relationships with key nodes who can help you navigate talent clusters
At EF, we seek to build a deep understanding of a small number of dense talent clusters. To do this, we need to build enduring relationships with key nodes within these clusters, such as Computer Science Professors, or the leaders of interesting societies. You’ll be responsible for helping your team to identify these nodes, and then personally building relationships with them.
3. Be a trusted advisor to exceptional talent, from before they realise they want to be a founder through to the close of their seed round and beyond
You will unlock the potential of the deeply ambitious by working closely with them as a trusted career and company building advisor. This means accompanying them through the process of deciding they want to be a founder, developing their first idea, finding (and likely breaking up with) their first co-founder, reaching out to their first customers, right through to the moment they close their first round of external funding. You will leverage the power of EF’s global network to amplify your work.
4. Constantly train your mental model of what exceptional talent looks like
To be an excellent Talent Investor, you’ll need to be constantly training your mental model of what exceptional talent looks like. This will require; (i) prolonged and repeated exposure to exceptional talent through the activities outlined above, (ii) learning from EF’s best Talent Investors through apprenticeship-style training and (iii) the humility and discipline to learn from failure and success.
5. Drive investment decisions into individuals and the startups they build
You will be a driver of our investment decision-making, where we primarily focus on the potential of the talent, and subsequently the team/idea they have created. You will be responsible for leveraging the collective wisdom of your team, and the wider EF network, to ensure we make good decisions.
6. Build and manage a high performing team of Talent Investors
You will be responsible for building and managing a high performing, elite team of Talent Investors who are collectively motivated to unlock the potential of the world’s most exceptional people through company creation.
WHO YOU ARE
You are intellectually curious: Talent Investors have a deep and persistent desire to increase their knowledge of the world. They have an interest in the future, including how emerging technologies and sciences can be used to solve problems. They seek out the foundational ideas behind a concept or belief system. They often have multiple interests and hobbies, some of which may be quite obscure. They’re constantly updating their knowledge and beliefs through self-directed learning. You love building zero to one, self starter and entrepreneurial Talent Investors thrive on taking a strategy, and taking the ownership to operationalize and execute it with excellence. They will have the opportunity to build out their own team in order to maximise network relationships and optimise for founder success.
You are a discerning judge of others: Talent Investors hold high expectations for themselves and expect the same of others. They are able to balance optimism and realism when they evaluate others. They are able to believe and see possibility in individuals where their potential may not be obvious to others.
You understand and appreciate technology’s potential for impact: Talent Investors are fascinated by technology’s potential for impact, particularly through early stage company creation. Even if not a technologist by training, they will have developed an understanding of, and appreciation for, various different technologies, likely through self-directed learning.
You are driven: Talent Investors are innately driven to achieve ambitious goals. They “run through walls” and find creative ways to achieve their desired outcomes. They are restless in their pursuit of excellence, and won’t take no for an answer.
You are a network builder: Talent Investors enjoy building, and immersing themselves within, networks of exceptional people. They can build meaningful relationships with exceptional people; both at peer-level, and with individuals more senior to themselves. They enjoy making intra- and inter-network connections.
You are an exceptional people manager: Talent Investors at this level can manage and lead small, elite teams of talented people. They enjoy developing and enabling teams to achieve extraordinary outcomes, but aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty. You drive a culture of growth mindset for yourself along with your team.
INTERVIEW PROCESS: we'll be reviewing applications in early to mid March, with the interview process culminating with a Global Selection Day for our Investment Team opportunities in late March. More will be confirmed in our first contact with you.
WHAT WE OFFERA competitive salary, carried interest and generous upside potential based on performance A buzzing space to work from full of ambitious founders working on world changing businesses The opportunity to supercharge your learning by working with a diverse global team across Europe, Asia and North America Attractive holiday allowance Enhanced parental leave, plus broader leave policies. We care about our team and enabling the right balance between home and working life.
EF champions diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive environment in which a wide variety of backgrounds thrive. We do not tolerate discrimination of any nature, including but not limited to: discriminating on the basis of race, colour, religion, culture, nationality, gender, gender identity or expression, pregnancy, sexual orientation, age, disability, or marital status.