One of the ways you gauge how good a company is how much you miss it after you leave. Somehow everything comes together in an amazing work place - the work, the people and the vibe. This in a nutshell summarizes my time at Lightbox.
Work: I came with several years of experience looking to see whether I liked VC and thus was a bit circumspect at first about the work I would be asked to do. But as soon as I began, I found my assignments to be intellectually engaging and fitting directly in to some crucial projects. In addition, I had complete autonomy in deciding my schedule and how I wanted to go about a certain task. This made the entire experience very enriching since I learnt both by doing and by osmosis while having a clear sense of how I was contributing to the team.
People: The team is what makes Lightbox an excellent place to work. I can't stress that enough. There is a sense of alignment, of purpose. A consummate dedication to the portfolio companies. The thing I liked most was that every team member was very sharp yet very approachable and incredibly passionate about building and growing companies. Having worked with other VCs in my startup, I had not witnessed such passion before.
Vibe: Challenging work and good people often creates a productive atmosphere. However, it is one thing to have it by default, quite another to develop it intentionally. I made several pages of notes on how the team actively encouraged each other to create and build upon this atmosphere. The office itself deserves mention - the cafe upstairs a perennial space for high productivity and many-an-interesting event in the evenings. Result - every morning, I looked forward to come to work.
In short, I had a great experience working at Lightbox and miss it often. It taught me a lot both about investing in and building a company - things I will embed in my next startup. If you get a chance to work here, grab it with both hands - its amazing.
However - don't steal Sid's thunder in his AMAs or Krishna's chair. You have been warned!
if the deal goes through, it may be the biggest signal yet that the Indian technology ecosystem is evolving to its next phase. It will pave the way for the emergence of a future consolidator in India’s technology market.