Don’t Dream It’s Over

Hi, #BCSTT! I’m missing all of you already. In the first 48 hours, I definitely went through withdrawal and so it is with bittersweet feelings that I anticipate our last class meeting.

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As I’m sure you all agree that TechTrek was one heck of a trip. Thank you, Professor Kane, Professor Doyle, and Kelsey, for taking us on a once in a lifetime experience and also for putting up with us when we were all half-delirious on the bus at the end of the day. This trip wouldn’t have been possible without your leadership, experience, and guidance. I truly believe that TechTrek is the best class that BC offers its students and I feel so grateful that you let me take part in it!

Thank you also to my other 23 classmates, who I now consider friends. In my introductory blog post, I talked about how excited I was to get to know you. Be careful what you wish for (kidding)! Thank you for asking deep and meaningful questions that enriched my learning experience.  Thank you for those late night chats that helped me realize I’m not the only one who doesn’t know what she wants to do with her life and that it is totally okay.  Thank you for keeping morale high and the mood light (Veem!).

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A little update on me since the beginning of the semester when we wrote our introduction posts:

  1. I declared Information Systems and Business Analytics as my concentrations
  2. Most of my favorite companies were the smaller, less well-known startups that we visited
  3. I love San Francisco as more than just an awesome city to visit
  4. I now know a lot more about VC and what a cool world that is
  5. Tech has become a viable option for a career for me

To provide a little more detail on #5, TechTrek changed how I viewed work. Growing up on the East Coast while watching my dad get up early every morning, get dressed in a suit, and go into NYC to his office to work led me to have a very traditional, corporate view of what work is. This view was easily perpetuated by CSOM where it seems that everyone is on either the finance, accounting, or investment banking tracks. I think there is nothing wrong with this type of work but going out west showed me there are so many more possibilities. Being a part of this class showed me just how many alumni in the workforce and students still at BC there are that are just as interested in some of these other paths. I learned that I have a lot more options than I initially thought and it is possible that I actually left the Bay Area with more questions than when I arrived (and that is saying something after compiling the final!).

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The TechTrek experience was one of great companies and inspiring people. If you went through my notebook, yes, you would find scribbles about company-specific details or initiatives. However, what mostly dominates the pages are lots of great, short quotes that can apply to anyone, anywhere, about how to not only work but also live your best life. I decided to list my favorites below so that hopefully you can take them with you wherever your path may go!

So without further ado, a comprehensive list of my favorite TechTrek quotes and questions:

Salesforce

  • values are only real when they are lived and shared
  • go for it, do it yourself, get help, fail fast
  • if you aren’t having fun here, you are doing it wrong
  • the only constant here is change

True Ventures

  • don’t compromise on integrity and humanity
  • time is finite and our most important resource
  • relationships are key
  • do I want to spend the next 10 years with them?

Madison Reed

  • you can run a company that has values
  • start with a leader and buy into it
  • it’s about the people, culture, and mission

Talkdesk

  • you are actually in sales whether you know it or not
  • how do you keep evolving?
  • you are always interviewing for your next role
  • be specific when asking for advice
  • put yourself in uncomfortable positions
  • startup culture isn’t limited to Silicon Valley

Veem

  • what are the top 3 things that keep you up at night?
  • are you adding value to the world?

Ouster

  • it is important to get the right types of people
  • look for someone who is humble and respectful above all else

Walmart Labs

  • your cap is how hard you work

Wepay

  • no “entrepreneurship path” to take
  • hard to run a business without being all in
  • businesses are built by clever hacks
  • how the world is changing and how we are going to fit into it?
  • build a product, sell it, and not necessarily in that order
  • always be hungry for self-improvement and self-reflection

Google

  • not a better solution until it is doing something new
  • you have to earn mentors
  • always have a couple of questions in your mind that you are answering
  • be low-maintenance and high-performing
  • you do belong here, there is a reason, we didn’t make a mistake
  • hone into what matters to you

Facebook

  • it’s not the what, but the how
  • technical skills get you in but soft skills help you advance
  • it’s all about expanding your impact
  • say it in as few words as possible
  • be your authentic self because it allows others to
  • there is a difference between a leader and a manager

Apple

  • be a freshman in life

Sequoia 

  • simple questions are better than complex ones
  • keep asking why
  • you become the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with

Split 

  • when you hit 30 you shouldn’t be modeling or in Excel
  • move as quickly as possible
  • find an amazing boss
  • enjoy your personal lives

Uber

  • the 3 most important things are intellectual curiosity, storytelling, and hard work

Thank you all for reading this semester. It was an unbelievably great time and while I’m sad that formally our journey on TechTrek has finished, at least we will always have our #BCSTT family!

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6 thoughts on “Don’t Dream It’s Over

  1. Hey Julia! I completely agree with your comment about your notes and while they may sometimes be short, there is so much that stands behind what the entrepreneurs we met had to say. I loved a lot of the smaller companies we visited too, although I can certainly say I was in awe at the campuses of the larger tech behemoths. The aura of intense grit, family, mission, and values was amazing at some of the smaller companies and arguably felt tangible as well. Thank you for bringing great insight and questions to our discussions! I am SO glad we all got to experience this journey together!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Julia, I hope you don’t mind me stealing some of these quotes!! It’s amazing how many great pieces of advice we received over the trip. If even just one of these companies shared their advice, I would’ve considered it successful. Never mind every single company providing a valuable life tip. Thank you for posting them, and thanks for everything else during the trip! It was such an amazing experience.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Julia, I loved how you formatted this blog not as a one big lesson but instead many little questions or snippets that you were able to take away from tech trek. Almost every visit has some piece of information that shaped the way that I looked at the future. There was a lot about there being no path to take and that can be very daunting, but now you know a little bit more about what direction to head. It was so great to spend time with you on the trip!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I loved reading your quotes and questions! It brought me right back to my week in SF, and these still hold true now more than ever (plus, new ones that Ouster and Salesforce are ones to add to my notes!). Congrats on declaring your IS concentration – a wise decision 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Julia! I love the quotes so much – a lot of them were quotes I also wrote down! I’m so glad I got to know you through this class. You are such a kind and radiant soul and also so genuine. I remember when we had dinner with Sophie, you talked about trying to shape the impact you’ll have on continuing generations of TechTrek to come. That showed me how thoughtful you are and how you’re driven by the values you believe in – honestly, just inspiring. I’m thankful to call you a friend now and super excited to see all the amazing things you do in the future! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Julia, this post was very YOU. You’ve come so far already in this semester, and your 5 big updates since your blog post are only the tip of the iceberg. You also picked up on a lot of great pieces of advice from the trip—I genuinely believe these little anecdotes will help guide us through some of the big decisions ahead. While Tech Trek doesn’t have to result in fundamental career changes, it’s great that it was able to show you the possibilities. Wherever you end up, you’re absolutely going to kill it. Keep shining, you inspiring human!

    Liked by 1 person

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