Temi Olatunde

Investment Professional. Age 29.

What does your day-to-day job entail?

I work at an international company that has offices in 25 countries so typically when I get into the office I spend the morning catching up with emails that have come through from Asia and other parts of the world. I have to get in touch with the portfolio companies that I manage to make sure we are on track to deliver. The rest of the day is really unpredictable. It’s quite often a mix of travel and meetings with entrepreneurs and investors that we can look to partner with.

What skills do you need to go into investment?

It’s obviously very useful to be good at numbers and to be quantitatively sound, but I’d say that one of the most important factors of what I do is being able to understand people. Investing behind entrepreneurs comes down to trust. No matter what you do you really have to be able to inspire and build confidence in the person you are investing in.

Is there someone in particular who has inspired you?

One of my biggest inspirations is my father. He always pushed me beyond my limits. He used to call me ‘small and mighty’ and that’s really stayed with me throughout everywhere I’ve gone in life.

What were you like at school?

At school I was a nerd – I loved to learn and I wasn’t ashamed of it. I was referred to as the ‘cool geek’ and I was okay with that.

‘Stay hungry, stay foolish’ is one of the pieces of advice I take through with me.
Where do you find your confidence?

Most of the time it’s faking it until you make it, taking risks and learning from them. I look back at the times where I’ve pushed myself beyond my comfort zone and I take confidence from knowing that I’ve been successful during those times.

What advice would you give to your teenage self?

Just be you and focus on living life authentically to who you are and don’t worry about gender or race or any of those things because, ultimately, who you are is enough.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

‘Stay hungry, stay foolish’ is one of the pieces of advice I take through with me in my daily life. It’s that constant drive to really learn to be hungry and go for what you want. Not everyone knows everything so you should constantly push yourself to learn.

If your teenage self could see you now what would she think?

I’m proud of the accomplishments that I’ve had to date but, most importantly, I’ve stayed true to who I am and what I believe in and that’s something that I’ve kept consistent. People who look at me now and knew me as a child will say I’m still the same person.