Luxury Disillusionment

Today was the official start of on-campus recruiting. Several companies made presentations throughout the day about who they were, what they did, what positions they offered, and why we should work for them.

Most of the companies participating in on-campus recruiting this year are outside of my target industries (technology, energy, space exploration, sports, and wine–very focused, I know!) so I will spend the majority of my job search pursuing opportunities off-campus. However, I was intrigued by two luxury brand conglomerates that presented today, one because it owned several wine brands and one because we studied one if its major acquisitions in Strategy.

I was curious to find out if these companies were really just about luxury and image or if they had more . . . “substance” to them. Did they offer anything of value to society or did they really just exist to fulfill the desires of the upper class? I asked the presenters questions about environmental and social responsibility but was disappointed in the responses. I’m sure their PR departments have good arguments but the fact that their recruiters didn’t know them indicated something about the cultures of these two companies. More pointedly it indicated that they weren’t places where I wanted to begin the next phase of my career and mission to change the world for the better.

I think this is the real benefit of on-campus company presentations: not helping you decide which companies DO interest you, rather learning enough about industries you don’t know well to decide firmly that they do NOT interest you. That is helpful to the students and to the recruiting companies.

Published by Bryan Guido Hassin

These are the musings of a global cleantech entrepreneur. This blog began as a way to document my experience during the IMD MBA in Switzerland and now is the place where I publish eclectic thoughts on business, politics, fitness, entertainment, travel, wine, sports, and . . . whatever else is top of mind.

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