Brian Lang, C’08
Brian Lang, C'08

Senior Manager, Human Resources at Comcast

Philadelphia, PA

Psychology Major

I’m an HR business partner at Comcast, which means I make sure our employees have an incredible experience and partner with team leaders to maximize their potential. There are a lot of different specialties within HR; you could be in leadership, compensation, talent development, employee relations, recruiting. I love my job because it gives me license to have my hands in all these different pockets.

Listening only to your head will create a very short runway, while listening to your heart will sustain you for your entire career.

You’ve heard the expression “jack of all trades, master of none,” but what often gets left out is the ending to that. It’s “jack of all trades, master of none—but greater than one.” I’m the kind of person who gets bored quickly if I’m doing the same thing, and I never have that issue here, because people are at the heart of my role and people are constantly changing, and our organization is constantly changing. With that constant movement, there’s always a challenge in front of me. Comcast is a leading-edge, innovative company and a tremendous place to work, but how do we keep it that way? How do we keep taking it up a notch? Not all people are the same, so how do we make sure everyone—not just the lion’s share, but everyone—has a great experience? How do we make sure everyone is able to maximize their contribution to the company to help us achieve/exceed our goals and be even more successful?

My purpose in life, the best way I can articulate it, is to help people and teams maximize their potential. To do that, people have to know what their potential is and what they actually want to do, because it’s about marrying interests with abilities and matching a need that exists in the business. I’ve done a lot of work on employees’ growth and development plans, helping them understand what motivates them and what skills they want to keep leveraging, and then connecting them to opportunities. We’re happiest and performing at our best when we’re doing work that we find fulfilling and that makes use of our abilities. My job is to connect people to that work.

Freshman-year me didn’t know what he wanted to do. I switched my major a few times and decided on psychology in my junior year. I’d taken all my survey courses, and I think the design of that is so that you get exposed to a lot of things and find out what you do and don’t like. I was most excited to go to my psychology classes because I was fascinated by what makes people tick and why they do what they do. Why do some people do this, and other people do that?

I would tell today’s students to focus on what they’re passionate about and what’s meaningful to them. When it comes to picking a major and a job, there’s the head and the heart, and by default we often go to the head: What’ll pay a lot of money, and what’s a logical path given the one I’ve been on so far? I’d advise students to amplify the heart aspect of it. Listening only to your head will create a very short runway, while listening to your heart will sustain you for your entire career. — August 15, 2023 • Photo by Brooke Sietinsons