Khaled has worked on Advent’s investment in Medius.
Advent felt like the right fit for me.
When I talked to people in the industry about Advent, a few responses kept coming up. One was that its environment was far more collaborative, lean and entrepreneurial than a typical large private equity fund. Another was that it was more focused on the commercial and operational aspects of investments – which wasn’t a surprise, given that I heard Advent hired comparatively more consultants. My consulting toolkit was somewhat weak, given my banking background, so I felt Advent was a great platform to develop those skills and become a more complete investor five to ten years down the line.
I had to adapt quickly to a new way of working.
In investment banking, deal teams are much bigger, and the team structure ultimately means that the day-to-day job is very reactive. At a junior level, you’re not really asked for your opinion: you’re expected to execute. At Advent, I quickly noticed I had to completely rewire the way I work, to be more proactive and take on more responsibility. There’s always a push to form a view. It’s challenging, but you always feel as though you’re moving the needle, which is a very positive thing.
Trust is needed to get the most out of diversity.
Soon after I joined, someone at the firm said to me, “We hire people from all backgrounds, but if we teach everyone to think in a certain, specific way, we’re not getting any value from that diversity.” At Advent, you’re trusted from the beginning, and given the autonomy to do things your own way with some high-level guidance.
Before finance, I wanted to be a professional soccer player.
I played competitively in Jordan when I was growing up, and then ended up training with a third-division team in Spain, just outside Madrid. The training was brutal, up to eight hours a day, and I found out quickly that it was too high a level for me. I was lucky enough to have family members in finance and venture capital that I had as mentors throughout my journey afterwards. I ended up focusing on my studies and enjoying finance – and now I’m following in their footsteps.