Shawn Xu

Shawn Xu

5.0 · 13 Reviews

Great For

Founders Men Managers Entry Level Career Changers Women POC New Grads Immigrants Product Management LGBTQ Creatives Executives Developers Veterans

Helps With

Confidence Return to Work Business Growth Networking Leadership Mock Interviews Resumes Salary Negotiation Work/Life Balance Relocation


Advertising Social Media Government Ecommerce Enterprise Social Impact SaaS Non-Profits Startups Finance Tech Sales HR Education Health Care Consumer Legal Fashion Food Automotive Marketing Entertainment Real Estate Design

Worked With

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I'm a venture capitalist at Floodgate, a firm that's backed Lyft, Twitter, Twitch, & more. I've been listed on the Forbes 30 Under 30 and featured in Techcrunch and WSJ. I've helped build startups of all stages, most recently at Square. I'd love to chat!

Start Coaching with Shawn Xu

Book Session

Hi , I'm Shawn.

I'm a venture capitalist and former startup executive who has mentored 100+ CEOs, entrepreneurs, and investors. I'm an experienced coach with a long track record in helping people think through how to build a satisfying career in Silicon Valley.

What I Can Help You With

I can help you break into venture capital: I've worked for 5 venture funds and have a good sense of what it takes to break into this very nebulous industry. Recruiting for a job in venture can be frustrating - you often get zero or ambiguous feedback. Let me help you decode VC speak. I'd love to help position you for success at the top firms in the industry.

I can help you think through starting a company: I've invested in 25+ companies and have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. I'd love to help give you structure around how to think through your idea, how to recruit a team, build 0 to 1, and fundraise for your preseed / seed.

I can help you navigate your startup career: I've worked for 3 startups, all very different in stage (from founding team to hypergrowth to IPO). I'd love to help you think through which startup to bet your career on, as well as what operational role makes the most sense for you. I'm especially excited to work with folks who are thinking through a pivot (in either role or industry).

I can help you get into business school: I applied and was accepted into The Wharton School and Lauder Institute's MBA/MA program at Penn. The b-school journey can be really tough, I took me roughly 2 years. I can help you think through whether business school is right for you, offer feedback on narrative, resume, essays, and interviews. I'm also happy to give you my two cents on how to best set yourself up for success while there.

What's Next?

I try to only work with 1-2 people at any one time. If you come from a disadvantaged background (low income, first generation college student, etc), shoot me a note, I'd love to pay it forward and work with you for free.

If any of the above sound interesting, please message me! I'm really excited to hear from you.


Diego De Colombres

· 10/21/20 · Subscriber

On point

abhi das

· 08/23/20 · Subscriber

Shawn is amazing - to the point and has deep industry expertise when it comes to early-stage tech; Very glad to work with him!

Diego De Colombres

· 08/19/20 · Subscriber

On point :)

Diego De Colombres

· 07/21/20 · Subscriber

Very tactical, straight to the point.

Diego De Colombres

· 07/01/20 · Coaching Intro

Spot on. Candid and transparent about what he can bring to the table.


· 06/11/20 · Coaching Intro

Shawn is a good coach. He listens, processes quickly and provides insights tips using clear frameworks. I enjoyed getting Shawn’s insights. If you are looking for fresh perspective from someone who has seen many startups and has been around the valley, Shawn can be your next coach


· 05/31/20 · Subscriber

Having gone through the same path in VC world, He really gets it. It was super easy for me to explain where I am looking to go. I have had coaches before who are with decades of experiences and they were great but the biggest gap I had was they didn't really understand the search process for my industry.

Ali Baxter

· 05/29/20 · Subscriber

Shawn is great! We had an hour-long coaching call and he really helped me strategize and navigate through the VC world. Looking forward to more calls with Shawn to reach my career goals.

Sean Lee

· 05/29/20 · Coaching Intro

Shawn is a really personable guy who's easy to talk to. I really enjoyed the conversation and we had a really productive intro call.

Ali Baxter

· 05/26/20 · Subscriber

Shawn is great! Very direct and can tell you right away how he can help you. I am planning on working with Shawn as a coach moving forward.

Matthew Healey

· 05/13/20 · Coaching Intro

I really enjoyed my coaching intro with Shawn. He wasted no time getting to know my background and understand what I was looking for in my next role. I liked his collaborative and consultative style and felt that he really listened to my goals. He has an incredible background which he was able to drawn on to provide thoughtful insights and suggestions on how to best approach my next career move. If you are looking to advance a career in the startup or VC world, Shawn is your guy.

Tuongvan Le

· 05/09/20 · Subscriber

Shawn gives very concise, actionable, insightful guidance. I feel very well supported and have learned tremendously from our conversations

Amisha Upadhyaya

· 04/20/20 · Subscriber

It was a great call. Shawn provided valuable insights into my roadmap and goals even in the 15 minute conversation we had. He was transparent about what he could and could not bring to the table. He was clear as to what expect from coaching with him. He was prepared and enthusiastic; optimistic but knew the lay of the land. And he is now my coach!