Balancing the Grind with Kevin Brockland, Managing Partner at Indelible Ventures

Kevin Brockland is the Managing Partner at Indelible Ventures, a seed stage venture fund based in Malaysia.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

My background has primarily been in Investment Management, but always on the private markets. My formative years were after my MBA when I was working in the distressed asset space post-global financial crisis.

This was an intense time period with an extremely high transaction volume. It gave me a lot of operational insight in a broad range of companies, seeing the pain points and trigger points that led to distress. This has been a valuable lesson that I have carried forward with me to today.

Over time, I advanced to take on global roles but have intentionally reversed this to regional. The part that I enjoy most is being able to work directly with companies and being an available and an active investor in providing value-add.

At my last role, I was working in Latin America covering that region when I was asked to also take over the Asia portfolio. Ultimately, I grew tired of the constant trans-pacific travel and needed to settle on a single region. This led me to be based in Malaysia.

In 2021, I launched Indelible Ventures. Over the prior years living in Malaysia, I consistently saw that there was a high quality of entrepreneurs but the funding ecosystem was broken. After seeing this time and again, I finally was motivated to try to fill the gap myself.

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

As Founder and Managing Partner of a VC, there are 2 sides to the business. The obvious that most people understand (to an extent) is that I seek out quality companies in order to make risk-based investments. The part that is less clear is that I must first pool capital from a variety of sources in order to have the capital to invest.

An average workday for me typically goes like this: 

  • 7am – 9am: catch up on my email box, read the newsletters I subscribe to, and read other news outlets. Occasionally, I have scheduled calls with people in California (their end of workday hours).
    • 9am – 11am: Dedicated for research, analysis, and any written work that I need to accomplish. These are my most productive hours for this type of work.
    • 11am – 12pm: Gym Break
    • 1pm – 6pm: Dedicated to Portfolio related activities, both current and pipeline. This includes a lot of meetings.
    • 6pm – 9pm: Family time
    • 9pm – 12am: Available hours for stakeholder calls in US and Europe

3) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

I work from home on a regular basis. The balance between home and home office has always been a challenge. It is also a challenge to have a high demand occupation that requires significant time from me. However, I have been able to strike a balance between my own schedule and that of my family.

My start of the day is the same time when my kids are going off to school. I make personal time for my health with a gym break mid-day. In the afternoon my kids have activities, but I end my work when they are home for dinner.

Once they are in bed and asleep, I am able to have available hours to work again on an as needed basis. I always try to ensure a couple weekday evenings are dedicated to my wife. I also rarely if ever will do any work over the weekend.

This is critical because family is what we are working for, so to sacrifice the objective in favor of the means does not make logical sense.

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4) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I used to wake up at 5am for a morning run. However, I was able to do this because my kids (who are still quite young) previously would not wake up until I returned.

However, they have started to wake up earlier and I have given preference to my time with them instead of that morning run. I still get my exercise in at 11am every day, I just am no longer able to do 2 times a day.

5) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

For books, I have always focused on biographies and other works of nonfiction. However, recently the rate at which I read has become less frequent, except of course bedtime stories for my little ones.

I am a bit obsessive about podcasts. I created my own, SEA of Startups, where I interview startup founders in Southeast Asia. There are several others like, 20VC, The Full Ratchet, The Next Big Idea, Acquired, Invest Like the Best, and many others. Lenny’s Newsletter also recently launched a podcast which is amazing.

6) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

Since I am in the VC industry, it would be amazing to hear any of the big names in the space talk about how they balance.

7) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

The number of hours that I put in may seem high, but I love what I do. I think it is important to find that love for work in order to be able to strike a balance. It is also important to be present for your family and be available. It is difficult to disconnect, especially for an entrepreneur, but there needs to be an allocation of time. This is the greatest time management feat that there is.

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.