'I've Had It With Medicine!' 16 Options for Second Careers

Leigh Page

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July 10, 2014

In This Article

9. Work for a Venture Capital Company

Want a chance to earn millions? Then take a closer look at a second career at a venture capital firm. There, you'll often find greater challenges and even greater risks, with a shot at a huge income if you succeed.

In this line of work, physicians closely analyze start-up companies in healthcare -- in such areas as software, drugs, and medical devices -- and help determine whether the venture capital company should invest in them. The work is best suited for doctors with strong analytical skills, an aptitude for finances and statistics, and a willingness to take risks on largely untested start-ups.

Companies are often looking for young physicians with MBA degrees, but they also hire physicians who have proven their chops as consultants. Doctors can work full-time directly for the venture capital company or be hired as a freelance consultant.

Physicians even start their own venture capital companies. Marlene R. Krauss, MD, left an ophthalmology practice many years ago to start KBL Healthcare Ventures in Manhattan, after working for 8 years at an investment bank, according to the company Website.

Dr. Fork said physicians consulting with venture capital firms earn $300-$500 per hour. Working directly for a firm pays about $150,000 a year for entry-level positions, whereas some in the upper echelons can potentially earn millions.

Pluses: Competitive physicians with strong analytical skills can earn as much or more (way more) than they could in medicine.

Minuses: It's hard to break into this field -- and it's a real pressure cooker once inside.

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