We are hiring a Senior Associate

Nan Li
Nan Li
Mar 1 · Unlisted

Obvious Ventures is on a mission to partner with entrepreneurs building disruptive solutions to systemic challenges. We have teamed up with Twitter founder Evan Williams and other forward-thinking partners and LPs to build an early stage venture capital firm focused on addressing the fundamental building blocks of society and life.

We are talking about the biggest sectors in the economy which are being fundamentally transformed by technology (yet disassociated from the “tech industry” as most others consider it): food, healthcare, mobility, construction, manufacturing and supply chain, energy, education, finance, and the future of work.

Through our collective miles traveled as entrepreneurs, operators, and investors, we have seen the catalytic force of technology firsthand. We believe there is tremendous opportunity for technology-driven companies to spread far beyond the boundaries of “digital” to reimagine entire categories of the economy. These companies will be able to generate great financial returns. But even more importantly, these companies will also help to shape the world that we all want to live in because they will address things that really matter. We want to help make more of these companies. That’s what we call world positive venture capital.

In 2015, Obvious raised our inaugural fund, Obvious Ventures 1 LP of $123,456,789. Obvious is currently investing out of a $191,919,191 second fund. Across two funds, we’ve been fortunate to be early investors in such exemplary companies such as Beyond Meat, Gusto, Zymergen, Medium, Devoted Health, Good Eggs, Recursion Pharmaceuticals, Virta Health, and Olly. This has only emboldened us to pursue our mission further. For us, the idea is Obvious.

Senior Associate Position

We take a focused, thesis-driven approach to investing built on our firm-wide, world positive foundation. We dive deeply into market and technology trends ahead of our investments, backing relatively few companies per fund so we can meaningfully support those companies. We have a tight-knit, fun-loving, nerdy team of four partners, one VP, and three venture partners.

We are looking to grow the Obvious Ventures family with a Senior Associate who will work directly with the investment team based in San Francisco. We hope to find someone who shares our general curiosity for how the world works, and passion for exploring a wide range of topics — from quantum computing to U.S. healthcare reimbursement models. We hope that you will contribute to the general intellectual discourse, but also bring a vibrant, entrepreneurial spirit to the office as well.

Your Responsibilities

  • Network: To strategically strengthen relationships and networks for the firm — with co-investors, industry partners, services providers, and founders.
  • Sourcing: To effectively generate compelling deal flow and investment opportunities.
  • Public Presence: To contribute to the firm’s thought leadership and public perception with presence on social media, industry events, and firm publications.
  • Everything Else: To assist in all aspects of the investment process ranging from reviewing business plans, taking first meetings, performing due diligence on prospect companies, and supporting portfolio companies.

Our Responsibilities

  • Open Door: To keep an open door policy across the entire firm and give you a real sense of the full venture capital job. You will have exposure to investment theses, portfolio support, fund management, firm operations, investment decisions, and fundraising conversations.
  • One Team: To give you exposure working alongside everyone at Obvious and integrate you into the broad investment team. You will receive carry to share in our upside.
  • Mentorship: To invest in your career and do our best to help mold you into a great investor. As we do not have a policy of hiring an army of junior investors and expecting churn out, this is an important and rare addition to our team. We think of all of our investment team roles as “partner track”, and there is no expected expiration date.

Who You Are

We are looking for someone that adds to our optimistic, forward-looking team culture — much more so than a specific skill set or background. Here’s an attempt to articulate that, but we are more than open to building on this list!

  • Connector & Catalyst. You are passionate, proactive, and eager to build meaningful connections within the venture/startup ecosystem, and beyond. A plus for already having a great network through your previous career.
  • Warm & Authentic. You are able to build meaningful relationships with people from all walks of life.
  • Curious About Everything. Emerging technologies, software, hardware, legacy industries — you name it. It doesn’t matter, you enjoy learning about it all.
  • Absorb, Then Edit. From the wealth of information you’re able to collect about a particular topic, you are then capable of synthesizing it all into a point of view.
  • Self-Starter. You don’t need to be told exactly what to do, and are comfortable with working in unstructured environments.
  • (Just Enough) Experience. At least two years of work experience after undergrad, ideally in a related field (e.g. VC/PE, startup, product management, investment banking, corporate development, strategy consulting, etc.).
  • Table Stakes: You live and work by high ethical standards (here are a few of ours), have exceptional interpersonal and communication skills, and an ability to tolerate many, many puns.

A Note On Diverse Candidates

We know having varied backgrounds across the team makes us stronger at Obvious, and are actively working to diversify our ranks. No matter your gender, race, sexual orientation, or birthplace — please apply for this role! In the words of the team at Textio: “The more inclusive we are, the better our work will be.”


Interested? Drop us a note at talent@obvious.com with a resume and a little bit more about you. If you’re curious and think you might not be right, well — you might actually be perfect for the role.

We’re here and excited to hear from you.

Obvious Ventures


Thanks to Andrew Beebe, Gabe Kleinman, and James Joaquin


Nan Li

Written by

Nan Li

VC @ Obvious; technology, music, culture enthusiast

Obvious Ventures


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