Some people leave BV and close the door on coming back. Others leave the door…
John Borrowman, CPC
Borrowman Baker LLC
That job in the Corporate Development area of industry can look very attractive. Here’s what you should know.
Business valuation professionals often talk about making the shift to “the other side of the table” into a corporate development department. Sometimes the motivation has to do with getting your hands on the levers and the dials, and actually being accountable for results. Sometimes there’s an attraction to the idea of playing a role in mergers and acquisitions. Whatever it is that makes the grass look greener, there are hurdles you need to keep in mind.
– The number of jobs. In most companies, the corporate development function if located in the office of the CFO. Any given company has to reach a certain size threshold before the CFO can justify handing that function to a different individual. And, that same company has to reach an even higher threshold before it needs more than one person handling that function.
The bottom-line, then, is that there are simply fewer actual positions than you might think. Couple that with the fact that turnover in these positions is generally low (the individuals who are in them, like them for the same reasons you do!), and you get a clearer picture of the challenge.
– Experience bias. People who have little or no experience in consulting services may not grasp how the breadth of your experience can be useful to them. They may feel that if you have not worked with a company which makes their particular type of widget, the experience you do have is of little value.
– Compensation bias. On the whole, earnings potential is greater – for a greater number of people – in consulting services than in industry. The higher you rise in the consulting services hierarchy, the more likely you are to already be earning more than in that corporate development position you aspire to.
None of this is to say you can’t successfully make the leap. Others have done it. More will. What’s important is to go into the process with eyes open.