I understand many roles (consulting, PE, straight from MBA, etc) CAN successfully search, but IF YOU HAD TO spend###-###-#### years working for someone else before searching, what employment situation would set you up best to successfully search and operate (<$1 - $5M EBITDA in the Midwest, industry agnostic, for this example)?

Would it be a sales role in the industry you acquire in or geography you will operate in to teach you how to drive growth? Working for another searcher to learn from their mistakes? An operations role at a similar size company helping you learn to cut costs? A operating role at a PE fund teaching you how to find value? Something else?

Curious about your specific experiences vs. general answers.