Urvesh Is a Courageous Visionary

Venture Architect Lead, Digital Ventures – Berlin Office

At BCG, Visionaries navigate complexity with ease. They use their insight and intuition to identify the solutions that will create lasting impact. Urvesh has the courage to take action.

Whenever I pause to reflect on how I am dealing with my latest set of challenges, I notice that I tackle them very differently from how I would have one, two, or six months earlier. My experience with projects, clients, and industries at BCG Digital Ventures is constantly changing how I think about and approach problems. It’s not just that I’ve gained more experience but that each experience is radically different from the next and forces me to think from a new perspective.

Urvesh Shelat

In Urvesh’s Words

My time at BCG Digital Ventures has been about expanding my horizons. Before BCG, I studied 19th and 20th century history and health policy. BCG gave me training to excel in the business world and exposure to numerous industries, helping me gain a new perspective on where my career could take me.

In my first years at BCG, I worked in pharmaceuticals, steel manufacturing, oil products, banking, and social impact. It was great to see so many industries and organizations and to discover what excited and motivated me most. With support from the firm, I went to business school. When I returned, my learning accelerated. I spent a year exploring how digital and sharing-economy business models were shaking up traditional industries. Now at BCGDV, I help our clients found new digital businesses.

I am in a very different place from what I had originally imagined, thanks in large part to the opportunities BCG has given me.

About Urvesh

Urvesh holds a bachelor of arts degree from Harvard University, a master of philosophy in history from the University of Cambridge, and a master’s in business administration from Harvard Business School.

How does BCGDV fit into BCG as whole?

BCGDV helps us support our clients through the innovation and building of new digital business models. Since we started BCGDV in 2014, we now have an in-house team that works with corporate partners to execute on the digital strategy and develop new business models that our strategy work might propose. In these ways, BCGDV complements BCG really well.

What did you learn in your first year on the job?

In my first year, I analyzed a client’s sales force effectiveness as part of a larger client presentation. Suddenly, it became a major point of discussion, and I unexpectedly found myself having a back and forth with the client’s CEO, who wanted to dig into the analysis and implications. I learned that no matter how new or junior you are, if you have a good argument backed up with solid facts and intuition, you can hold your own in discussions with even the most senior executives. That has given me the confidence to always speak my mind and to let myself be convinced by others, regardless of their role or rank in a team.

How has BCG helped you grow and succeed?

My career at the firm has exposed me to new industries, new problems, and new roles, all within an extended support network of great colleagues, collaborators, and content experts to support me through the challenges that come up along the way.

What international experiences have been the most interesting for you?

I once worked on a project that was split between New York, Paris, and Mumbai. This was probably one of the most diverse collection of cities to see in a single two-week stretch. But overall, my career at BCG has been international from the start. I am American, but I joined BCG London, then transferred to BCG Munich before switching to Digital Ventures in Berlin. This job has kept me on the road!

If you could go back in time and tell your 18-year-old self one thing, what would it be?

Don’t expect your life to follow any straight lines. For me, a casual conversation led to a new study-abroad experience in college, which led me to a graduate degree abroad, which led me to working abroad in an entirely different field. This ultimately took me around the world and back again, working in industries I never expected to be interested in. So my advice to my 18-year-old self is: Be flexible.

Urvesh Is a Courageous Visionary