Jack Bambach via LinkedIn.com

Jack Bambach via LinkedIn.com

(Editor’s Note: Jack Bambach is one of the students currently on an immersion course in entrepreneurship, visiting tech companies in New York via EntreTechNYC. It involves a full week of visits to a variety of startups and/or established tech companies, with several stops each day. It’s a week some students have described as life-changing or essential to their future direction.

Jack is a sophomore at Syracuse University who is from Fairfield, Connecticut. He is studying Information Management & Technology at the iSchool with a minor in Marketing from the Martin J. Whitman School of Management.


Through this amazing opportunity to be here in New York City through Syracuse University, it’s been one of my goals to absorb all the information I can. This allows me to pick the brains of the people who currently sit in the seats that I hope to be able to call home at some point in my career. The plethora of experience, talent, and passion presented by SU alums has truly left me blown away.

As we’ve gone through the days of EntreTechNYC, it has been amazing to see and hear the stories of the different SU alums, as well as just general employees we met with at the companies we visited.


It has truly become apparent to me that the business world is no longer a place where people start at a company where they may not like the people, even though the pay is adequate and they can support themselves/their family until they can retire.

Comfort vs. Passion

That seemed to be the way of the world when my grandparents were in the workplace. The goal of being financially comfortable will always be here, but the process of following your own passion has led to an amazing start-up ecosystem here in New York City.

One of the main things that people are seeking is a culture they can identify with and people who share a passion for creativity in a non-corporate structure.

That Was It?

Yesterday, I was strongly looking forward to meeting with Buzzfeed. During our time there and while leaving, my thoughts ended up being, “Was that really Buzzfeed? That was it?”

To me, the place seemed like a vast array of long tables with people clustered around. It seemed like almost too much space to even focus on one thing at a time.

Our Debrief

buzI came to the realization that I did not line up with their company’s cultural identity. In a quick debrief after the visit, what we were focused on was the company culture.

Buzzfeed has been a pioneer in the digital news and digital media area since its inception, and is continuing to grow extremely quickly–expanding to Australia, Brazil, India, etc. Clearly, the company has a culture that is attracting bright minds to continue to push their business.

It’s the People

This realization came full circle for me tonight when I had the pleasure to talk with Chuck Clarvit. What Chuck, (who is a Board of Advisors member for the iSchool) told me is that it is not the money, it is not the product, it is not the company– but it is the people that you surround yourself with that will have the largest affect on your happiness and productivity while working.

I believe lessons such as this, which can be learned firsthand, are supremely valuable to students.

Have you had a similar experience related to a company’s culture? Can you tell when a culture is a good fit or not? Please give us your feedback in the comments section here.