5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Joining FAANG

Having spent the last seven years in the corporate world, initially as a management consultant in New York City and later transitioning to roles across sales and marketing in a FAANG tech company, I've had the privilege of observing and learning from top performers.

In this blog post, I will share five important lessons I've gleaned from their experiences.


  • Top 7 Gmail Tips for Productivity video
  • Harvard Business Review Article


  1. Build Credibility Through Reducing Friction: Make your colleagues' lives easier by taking simple actions, like providing documents via email, to establish yourself as a reliable and professional team member
  2. Influence Without Authority: Showcase your leadership skills by proactively creating structures and systems that make it easy for others to contribute, even without a senior title or formal authority
  3. Share Knowledge to Enhance Visibility: Gain recognition by actively sharing your knowledge and experiences with others, fostering a collaborative work environment and positioning yourself as a valuable resource
  4. Say "No" Intelligently: Prioritize effectively by communicating your workload, offering alternative solutions or resources, and maintaining positive relationships even when declining requests
  5. Network with an Open Mind: Expand your network and be genuinely curious about others' work, discovering unexpected career paths and collaborative opportunities that can benefit both parties

Watch it in action

Build Credibility with Colleagues

One crucial lesson I learned early on was the power of reducing friction for my colleagues to quickly establish credibility, even without extensive working experience. By finding ways to make their lives easier, you demonstrate professionalism and reliability.

For instance, when a teammate asks for meeting documents, instead of simply providing links in a messaging app, take a few extra minutes to compose an email with the files attached and provide a brief description.

This simple act allows your colleagues to access the information conveniently and saves them the hassle of digging through chat history later on.

Influence Without Authority

In the early years of your career, it's common to feel limited in your ability to influence others due to the absence of a senior title. However, I discovered a principle called "constructive persuasion" that empowers professionals to exert influence without relying on their position.

Constructive persuasion is about taking the initiative and going the extra mile to make things easier for your team. For example, when assigned the task of gathering revenue projections from your colleagues, create a structured and visually appealing table, clearly indicating who inputs what and by when.

By making it easy for others to contribute, you'll find that they're more likely to engage because you've already done most of the work.

Pro tip: You can check my Top 7 Gmail Tips for Productivity video to help you out.

Visibility in the Workplace

Contrary to popular belief, increasing your visibility in the workplace doesn't mean boasting about your achievements. Colleagues who consistently have a strong presence make time to share their knowledge and experiences with others.

By doing so, they establish themselves as valuable resources within their teams. When you learn something new or receive assistance from a colleague, acknowledge their contribution. Not only does this recognize their efforts, but it also increases their visibility.

People appreciate those who go out of their way to help, and good work rarely goes unnoticed.

How to Say "No”

Working professionals often face the challenge of maintaining a healthy work-life balance while taking on additional responsibilities. It's crucial to know how to say "no" without damaging your relationships.

When faced with a request that exceeds your capacity, communicate the time it will take to complete your current tasks and express your willingness to help afterward. Equally important, direct them to another resource or solution that can assist them temporarily.

This approach demonstrates your consideration for their needs while prioritizing your own workload.

Network with an Open Mind

Networking shouldn't be limited to pursuing a specific agenda or goal in every interaction.

By being open-minded, you allow yourself to explore unexpected opportunities that may lead to more fulfilling career paths. Remember these two networking tips:

  1. Make it a goal to have regular coffee chats or meals with professionals outside your core team
  2. Be genuinely curious about their work and seek collaborative possibilities. Even if their area of expertise doesn't align with your immediate aspirations, you may discover synergies between your teams that can enhance both your work and theirs

Want to stand out from your peers?

Make sure to watch my Increase Your Productivity at Work playlist.