In case you’d not heard it before, “FANG”, or more accurately but not as catchily, “FAANG”, is Facebook – Alphabet – Apple – Netflix – Google.
Uh, Netflix? Yeah, this witty acronym first came about a little while ago .
All the cool kids want to go work at these companies.
Honestly, these names show up in BSers’ essays so often.
But as we’ve written before, there are problems in utopia.
Is Facebook really your friend?
Can Google be trusted?
What happened to “Do no evil”?
When you tell Stanford that you want to make a difference or make the world a better place then it just comes across as lip service if later in your essay you talk about wanting to go to work at Facebook.
How, exactly, is Facebook making the world a better place and how, exactly, do you imagine that YOU would contribute to that? (In essays and interviews, the latter is the much more salient point to be making. If you can effectively make the case for what YOU would do to help the world, then it does not matter what companies you name that you would be doing it through. Just be careful that you don’t go overboard and dictate what duties you’d actually have or what projects you’d take on in some imagined future role. Unless you’ve actually got that job lined up, then it comes across as a little odd to be defining a hypothetical that precisely. See here for quasi-related.)
There’s an important article for you to read if this is your goal.
— Essay Snark (@EssaySnark) January 16, 2020
We understand that for a lot of BSers, using the MBA to transition into a product management role in a tech company seems like a no-brainer, given their profile. They may even wonder how else to leverage a background in engineering. Or they may have been told by other admissions consultants that they have to pitch tech prod mgmt because that’s the low-hanging fruit, the easiest thing to say to convince the adcom to let them in.
But if there are legions of other applicants with similar profiles saying they want to use the MBA for the same thing, then it’s not the easiest way to get in. Instead, it shows you as part of a crowded pool. It also implies a lemming effect. The adcom prize those who can think for themselves (yes we understand the irony of that statement when applied to the stereotype of business schools and the MBA population).
If you’re reading this and going, “But dang. I really do want to go to work at Google,” well that’s fine. Just make sure you know the reasons for this.
Is it just the allure of working in a cush job in a big-name firm in the Valley with all of these perks?
Is it the imagined lifestyle you will have in beautiful California driving a Tesla on your six-figure salary?
Nothing wrong with that, BSer. But please don’t kid yourself that it’s an altruistic save-the-world future that you’re pursuing.
Those working in tech actually could be contributing to the world’s downfall.
Having a big-picture view is important.
Being able to think for yourself? Even more so.
What are your personal priorities?
In what way do you want to add your light to the sum of light?
Maybe it’s working as a tech PM.
Heck, maybe it’s going to Wall Street! It could even be easier to get a job in financial services in this era.
If all you want to do is make some money, then truly, there’s nothing wrong with that. Having financial security is an important part of living a less-anxious life.
But man, the world needs help, too. You don’t have to go into non-profit to help. But please make sure you’re not contributing to evil in your efforts to pursue a good life.
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