Dev Aujla, creator of 50waystogetajob.com, might be able to help with your job search.
First, tell me about yourself and how your website came to be.
I am a Canadian. I started a non-profit called DreamNow in 2003 to help young people start community projects, and after five years, I realized all of the young people that we were helping were growing up and looking for jobs that made money and did good.
I started looking for the answer for how to do that and discovered thousands of companies that were rebuilding our world in ways that do good, and, most importantly, were hiring. I set out to tell people and show the young people I had been working with how to find these companies. I moved to New York four years ago and wrote a book called Making Good with my close friend Billy Parish.
Today I live between Toronto and New York and run a recruiting agency called Catalog that places people in jobs that make money and do good.
Ok, guide me through the site.
We wanted to create a simple guide that skipped all of the normal ‘follow your passion’ rhetoric and focused on the tangible steps you can take to get a job. We spent three years working with hundreds of people to test them out in person and 50waystogetajob.com is really the best of what we learned. It takes work but it will get you the job.
When browsing around on the site, I saw some unusual suggestions. For example, suggestion #39 (for those “stuck” in their job search) says, “Record yourself in a stressful situation.” Please explain how that can help in a job search.
Often times the way that we perceive we act is much different than the reality of how a situation goes. Job interviews can be stressful, rare events in peoples lives and when one starts to look more deeply at these moments and objectively how we act we usually do way better than we thought. It is both instructive and a huge confidence boost — often just what you need to do well in your next interview.
Can you give me some other examples from the site that might, at first, seem disconnected from the job search?
Renegotiate five commitments. This is simply a good task for anyone regardless whether or not they are looking for a job. We all carry around these commitments that burden us, and by actively choosing to renegotiate five of them we feel what it is like to have choice and the power that comes from saying no. It helps build the momentum you need to put yourself out there in unconventional ways beyond simply resume, job board, internet, repeat.
How have you seen these suggestions work in your own life, or in the lives of others?
Yes… all of the suggestions on the sites are connected to real stories of people that have followed the advice. From Miriam, who developed the job search spreadsheet (#41) to launch herself out of a government job and into the start-up world, to Mathias who completed #43 (Build A Portfolio For Yourself like an Artist) and went from a freelance consultant to a job with a learning company. It is possible.
Any more success stories you care to share?
Some of the people I have been most excited to hear from are the college career counselors. We have had a constant stream of them emailing us telling us how much the site has helped their students and how interested they are in figuring out how to share this across their campuses. It is nice to know authenticity resonates.
Will you please leave us with a few words of advice on using the site?
There is no right path through the site. Our job searches are nonlinear, so choose something that draws you in, then shut off your computer and take ten minutes and do it. Clicking through the site will not get you the job, but doing the hard work will. Try it.
And finally, how about some words of advice on the job search in general?
We are so fortunate to be living in a time where every industry is being rethought, redesigned, and rebuilt in ways that do good, and the companies that are doing this rebuilding are the ones that are hiring. This site will help you find those companies and get a real job doing it. Just begin.