My Professional Journey

Vineet V. George
7 min readMay 4, 2024

I was 7 years old when I decided that I wanted to be a doctor. A paediatrician, to be precise. My aunt was my inspiration (and yes, my own paediatrician too).

I was 16 years old when I realised how much I needed to study to become a doctor. (I still took a three-year journey of studying as much as possible).

I was 17 years old when my mom and I made a round trip to a small little town in Ludhiana to potentially enrol myself at a medical college. (We came back without doing so, because we both realised I couldn’t stay in Ludhiana).

We decided it was best for me to let go of my dreams of becoming a doctor, and like any self respecting kid from the 90s, I decided to pursue a career in engineering. I’d always liked automobiles so yes, Mechanical and Automation Engineering in Delhi became my Dream #2.

I was 21 years old when I realised I liked mechanical engineering but I couldn’t become an engineer. I wanted to be in business — small business to be precise.

I was 22 years old when I started working at a bookstore — a bookstore opposite my school — I’d been going there for almost 10 years but I’d never spoken to the people there. Once I did, I knew this was where I’d achieve small business ‘nirvana’.

For three years, I managed the B2B arm of the bookstore, selling books all across the country to schools, institutions, at national book fairs and other such avenues. And I also doubled up as the store manager for the night shift, from 5.30pm onwards, (which could sometimes run up to 11pm — my own late night bookstore experiments).

I loved my job. I was as excited to go to the bookstore at 7am on a Monday morning as I was going home at 9pm on a Sunday night.

I learned the art of sales at my first job, selling books to all kinds of customers. Kids, parents, librarians, school teachers, principals, teens (or young adults), housewives, grandparents, family and even to myself. The bookstore taught me humility (all of us did every job imagineable), work ethic, values, honesty at work, and being fair. The people at the bookstore held very high standards of integrity. This became one of the most important lessons that have stood me in good stead even today. I’m truly grateful for that experience.

After about three and a half years at the bookstore, I decided I’d learned a lot, and decided to pursue an MBA — luckily I got through a good MBA college.

I was 26 years old when I moved to Jamshedpur, a quaint little town, owned by Tata, in the state of Jharkhand, in the Eastern part of India.

Here I went through one of the best experiences of my life, learning the art of management, business and administration. (Puns weren’t intended).

I was luckier to have also got the opportunity to spend a couple of months each in Shanghai, China and Cleveland, Ohio, USA as part of two exchange programs during my MBA.

The experiences there shaped me into a more ‘global’ human being with a broader mindset, more empathy towards different cultures and stronger will power & determination. I’d begun taking a lot more responsibilities, as part of the placement committee and psuedo leader, taking care of the batch as a whole, being there for those around me.

It was a tough year for placements owing to various global and domestic factors. I still remember the most monumental day of my time there — The 1st of Feb, 2017 — when our entire batch got placed. I don’t even want to say I was ‘elated’ because that would be an understatement. Yes, happiness is a good feeling, but happiness (for others) coupled with relief is next level. The successful culmination of a year and a half of extreme hard work was mind blowing, numbing and humbling, all at the same time.

I had never felt any of those feelings ever in my life. And I was grateful as ever.

I was 28 years old when I began my first ‘corporate’ role at a mid-sized organization in Pune. We were Google partners, one of the largest in Asia-Pacific and this was a time when Google Cloud itself was finding its footing in India and the world. A great time to be in this domain, as we learned, failed, succeeded and moved very very fast.

Serendipitously I was thrown into the deep end by a CEO who really believed in me and was asked to build an entirely new business unit from scratch — Google Maps. This was the first time I fell in love with a product and took it upon myself to get this product out into the world — any startup in any industry that did not use Google Maps, became my target customer.

Slowly and steadily, a team was formed, we built a startup within the company. A team of talented youngsters across Sales, Product, Tech, Customer Success and Marketing. We did it all, and we built a new business unit from Zero to $7 Million annual revenue in a span of 1.5 years.

We sailed the ship through Covid, came out of it strong and continued building. The best part of this experience was building a team that worked as much with their heart as they did with their head. I was blessed to lead a group of individuals who were genuinely good human beings, and gave their all to achieve our common goals. Insanely amazing folks!

This experience was and still is ‘gold’.

I was 32 years old when I decided to hire my replacement and move on from my own team. Why? I don’t actually think it was one thing. There were a number of reasons — Comfort zone, a growth mindset, ensuring that I did not become the impediment for the growth of the business unit and general mental wellbeing. (I wanted to take some time off to spend with family, myself and to travel).

I was 33 years old when I joined the world of analytics with a German Mobile Attribution company, as an individual contributor. In the two years there, I was able to hone my skills in sales, technology, and marketing analytics. My goal was to become great at consulting as well as sales. I think I achieved that goal, and a few other goals along the way, in my personal life as well — Saving up for a larger motorbike, moving to a new home with my best friend (my wife), setting up a new life in Bangalore and being a more rounded human being — learning how to swim, play the guitar, support communities, take care of animals and be a better family man.

Professionally, it was also great to open up Finance as a sector in South Asia, build a completely new market — Bangladesh, become technically very adept, and building a good standing in my professional network. Interestingly, for the first time in my life, a founder referred me to another organization who was hiring for their India team. And that’s how I moved deeper into the world of product analytics with my current organization. I’d never understood the power of ‘network’ before this.

I was 35 years old (I still am) when I joined my current organization in the world of product analytics. A natural transition from the world of marketing analytics. While it’s still early days here, I’m very excited about this new world of product, tech and analytics. I can already feel tremendous growth in the three months I have been here. I think I’m a better sales person, with deeper skills than when I joined and I am much more confident about myself than I was before.

While there are a lot of feelings inside me, all I can say is that I feel blessed, lucky and very excited for what the future holds.

This year marks my 10th year of working. When I look back I am amazed at the breadth of work I’ve been blessed to have been associated with. From selling books to selling a product analytics platform that’s used by Netflix & Uber, life sure has come a long way.

I also look back and feel grateful at each and every experience I’ve been through. I also think about the 17 year old me, who had wanted to become a paediatrician, and wonder what he’d think of this person, double his age and having done everything he never thought he’d do.

While I don’t know what the 17 year old me would think, I sure as hell know that he would be in awe of the person he has become today. And while his dream of becoming a doctor did not get fulfilled, this life I’m living, the people I’m spending it with and the freedom I’m living it with — all these are dreams that the 17 year old kid couldn’t even have dreamt of.

Always grateful.

And even more excited about the next 10 years.

Cheers!

What we dream of becoming one day.
What life give us. :)

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Vineet V. George

A sales and consulting professional who enjoys writing about things that are close to his heart.