Watching this interesting show called Bulge Bracket on Amazon Prime. I have to admit, I know nothing about traditional fintech companies, so I cannot evaluate the realism of this show. As the self referential show asks, what is this Silicon Valley? The raunchy behavior is terrible terrible worst possible that you’d imagine maybe from the 1980’s? Or is this what 2020 looked like in Investment Banking?
The show is a little bit of an expectation jerker, season one ending with Bolo giving a reasonable pitch to his talented young female recruit to stay on board despite a finance-career making sexual proposition from potential client. This part sounds pretty real, well realistic for an Asian boss, solidly delivered: “I like how you work, I worked harder to get here, stay here and work harder for me and we’ll all be rich.”
But ultimately what really gets me is the HR scene. The HR executive immediately went on an offensive registering a complaint after the employee made legitimate complaints regarding behaviors of executives at the company and executives at other companies.
And I obviously do not speak from deep hatred of HR departments and some of their staff who choose to engage in this kind of activities for companies that I didn’t work for.
But when it does happen, it really hurts. If you think a female HR executive being marched around promoting company-wide support for female career development called BankHer would turn around and stonewall a newly hired female employee’s TWO sexual harassment complaints. Imagine how a lesser supported minority might feel when backstabbed like this at work.
But let me append that hate speech with a notice that I have friends who do HR, and they’re all wonderful people! Can’t find better specimen of human being than them. And seriously, there are those that have served me solidly and help to resolve conflicts and make the work place efficient and happy. Like these people are like instant friends. It’s their job to make help the teams work together and to bring to bear skill sets that vanilla management staff do not have. They don’t put a stupid black mark in your file so that they can have a reason to send you off. They don’t just register complaints so that they have work to show for. Like, sheesh, there are just such wonderful people out there when you think about what some other people do in their positions.
I wouldn’t expect the show to be renewed: 1.) too Asian, 2.) too real, 3.) that’s about it, like unless it descend into Silicone Valley territory, there isn’t that much more to what gets people out the door on Monday mornings.
And I should note the irony. The maker of the show apparently is an Asian living in California looking into the world of Finance through a spouse… I am an Asian watching their TV show. One does have to wonder if their perspective and my own may slant in the same way as our eyes do when observed by broader American audience. They feel so angry/nervous/strongly about it that they made a show on Amazon Prime. I feel so much anger/fear that I blog about it, but in reality, I don’t see anyone else making the same kind of big deal about it in these explicit ways. Or honestly, maybe I missed them because they usually portrait minority success and not so much failure. Maybe because the actress was Latino or black and I just didn’t feel it so vividly as I do watching Asians suffer. Maybe… idk, I really don’t see why non-Asians will be interested in this show—because maybe they have the same problem, the protagonist is not their in their race-social-economic stratus and they just don’t feel that strongly about it.
In my head, this is playing at FAMX.3