At BCG, Challengers go against expected thinking and inspire their teams to be truly innovative. JB seeks a new perspective.
BCG is molding me into the professional I need to be in order to accomplish what I want to in life.
Before marching onto the field, players on the TV show Friday Night Lights chant, "Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose!" It's a phrase President Obama echoed during his final State of the Union: "That's the country we love. Clear-eyed. Big-hearted. Optimistic that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.” I believe that making a difference in the world requires not only fullness of heart but also clarity of thought.
Fullness of heart has never been my challenge. Leaving undergrad, I put my economics degree aside and dove headfirst into a career as a self-taught photojournalist. I believed strongly in the power of beauty that photography can capture. But eventually I tired of commenting on issues from the sideline. I wanted to play the game, and I wanted to play it well. To do that, I needed a first class education. That's why I'm at BCG: to learn to see how the world works more clearly.
Before coming to BCG, JB worked as an artist and an entrepreneur. He holds an MBA from NYU Stern.
Q: What did you learn in your first year on the job?
A: Process, process, process. I learned how to break down and tackle challenges through organized work planning, clear and proactive communication with leadership, and pragmatic but relentless drive. It doesn't sound sexy, but I think it's probably the most useful thing I'll learn at BCG—more important than any industry or topic expertise.
Q: How has BCG helped you grow and succeed?
A: BCG has given me confidence. At the beginning, I was intimidated by the stature of the firm and my classmates. But almost every manager I've come in contact with at BCG has been a mentor to me. They've pushed me to be a better professional even as they affirmed my belief that I was up to the challenge. My fear has now melted away, and I come to work each day knowing that I belong. It’s a confidence I'll carry with me the rest of my career.
Q: What groups or organizations have you gotten involved with at BCG?
A: My current case is an internal research project in support of BrightHouse, a boutique consulting firm that BCG recently acquired. BrightHouse helps companies define their purpose: why they are in business, beyond generating a profit or providing employment. Having tried (and failed) to build a purposeful brand before business school (Google “Nuru Project”), I'm eager to understand BrightHouse's work. Our project is helping BrightHouse quantify purpose for the first time and seeing whether we can correlate excellence in purpose with performance in the marketplace. It's the Holy Grail in the purpose space and the opportunity to participate is very exciting.