Leaving 

Of the many things I've done in these short twenty-four years of youth, interning at  has been one of the most painful and existential experiences of my life. I guess the first thing I should answer is what group I worked in. That would be iPhone PD. What do we do? I can't tell you. Just know that this is the group that is at the core of the most important product in the most valuable company in the world. 

At any point in time, there are a hundred things on everyone's minds. And you can bet ten of those need to be finished in the upcoming week, twenty need to be done by tomorrow, thirty today, and the rest are weeks overdue. The first thing you realize is that creating a product like this year after year doesn't happen haphazardly and at that pace, there is absolutely no way the team can make it happen with normal 40-hour work weeks. 50 becomes an absolute minimum, 60 is an average work week, and the diehards can hit anywhere from 70 to over 100. 

Let me be straight-forward, I can't do that. Most of us can't do that. It's only under very rare circumstances that I would be willing to throw my family and friends aside in order to sacrifice my entire being for my work. In grad school, we put in 16-hour days and 7 days a week during project time, which endures for about 3-4 weeks. I did that. I did that because I worked on a team made up of my friends. I cared about the project because they cared about the project, and in turn, we had enough respect for each other to hold up our responsibilities.

But, in this specific group at , interns are treated with very little respect. Some accept their status at the bottom with the expectation to someday rise to the top. Most just fall in line and just monotonously do the work. However, for me being the egotistical person I am -- I'm straight up like what? Fuck that shit. 

F U C K     T H A T     S H I T .

Nevertheless, there are people who thrive in this environment and find this place to be a good fit for them. And of course, hats off to them. They get to enjoy an amazing hourly rate that is ungodly multiplied by a generous overtime rate. Kids this young should not be playing with this much money. It's enough to make you laugh at all your economics friends in investment banking that THINK they're making a lot of money.

For me, it is a terrible fit. Fuck the money. I used to love money, and  has taught me that it don't mean shit. Making stacks on stacks means nothing if you do not have the time to enjoy it (and most importantly, enjoy it with the people you love). 

M Y     L E S S O N     L E A R N E D .

My greatest takeaway from this summer is I now know what I don't want. I know I fit better into a research and development type of environment rather than the commercial manufacturing world. I appreciate having an impact on the world and the average person's daily life, but I value more the scope and complexity of my own individual contribution to a project. And most of all, the work and environment are important. But, what I value most of all is the people I work with. I want to be treated with respect and surrounded by people I both respect and care about.

This is me cheezin' on my way out. I can even express how happy I am that it's all over. Enjoy your new iPhone 7 mutha fuckas.

James Bui10 Comments