SRB – congrats on your new gig! What brought you to Sidewalk Labs?
I’ve loved cities for a long time and have lived in several cities throughout my life. I’ve always thought about the fact that a city’s composition determines not only the way business operates, but also influences the way communities are formed and the way people live together. The city shapes peoples lives in a significant way, it’s powerful and it’s complicated. I’ve been enamored with Sidewalk Labs mission to reimagine cities from the internet up and am honored to help build the team that is using new technologies, led by ubiquitous connectivity, to help cities tackle their biggest challenges. We work with cities to develop products and tools that can address existing problems and drive toward the city of the future. It’s nothing short of thrilling!
Now, you have had an interesting career trajectory. You didn’t start out in recruiting, did you? What were you doing before that?
Funny enough, I started my career in an advertising agency as a Media Buyer, Looking back it’s almost laughable. I worked to put commercials on the air for P&G when I didn’t even own a TV. I learned more than I could have imagined from that job. I continued my career working for a small e-commerce start up in communications and operations, moved on to fundraise for a non-profit, then was convinced to try my hand as a recruiter. I’m so glad I was.
Throughout my career I’ve noticed a common thread: I’ve always enjoyed building processes and connecting with people over a mission. Now, I get to do both of these at work every day.
If someone was thinking about getting into recruiting, what are some easily transferable careers + skills?
If you’re excited to build out processes and enjoy operations, understand that relationships matter and can navigate a wide spectrum of personalities, are a sharp communicator, are comfortable with ambiguity, always hungry to learn and grow (you’ll be learning something new every day), can grasp both tactical and conceptual parts of a business, and have hustle and grit you may be cut out to be a recruiter. It’s not always going to be easy, but it will be fun!
Transferrable careers? Operations, Business Development, Fundraising, Sales, Marketing, and many more.
So we have a lot of readers that want to know – HOW DO THEY GET THEIR RESUME SEEN?
Great question! I’d say a lot of companies do look at resumes, however, I think you want your resume to actually get read – not just seen for a few seconds. (JV comment: YES! YES! YES!)
Showing the value you have brought to an organization rather than telling about your responsibilities is the first thing you must do. This is the difference between the 2007 resume and the 2017 resume. The 2007 resume lists all the things you are responsible for, the 2017 resume is all about communicating the things you’ve crushed during your career. Succinctly describing what you’ve been able to achieve professionally, or even while at school, is a powerful way to help you get more than a three second glance.
Okay, that helps. Now back to you. Tell us – what do you do in your spare time? What keeps you feeling “alive”?
I love my neighborhood (Park Slope) and adore spending weekends admiring the architecture, enjoying the farmer’s market, and Citibiking throughout Brooklyn and beyond. I’m an art junkie and can’t help but gallery hop any day I can. I’ve recently begun to get involved in a church in my neighborhood too!
I know you’ve been attempting to achieve a better work-life balance. How’s that going? Any suggestions?
The struggle is real- especially when you’ve just started a new job or entered the workforce! It’s natural to want to prove yourself to your boss and team.
This was something I’ve struggled with for a long time. Finally, last summer I paid to join a co-ed volleyball team. Every Monday I had to leave the office before 7pm to make it to my game. I found that doing a really fun thing during the week helped me recharge and made me more effective at the office.
This was one of the first big steps towards breaking my office martyr complex. I had to learn to take care of myself, let other people do their own jobs, and trust that the world wouldn’t end if I wasn’t reachable by phone or email. Now, it’s a huge blessing to look back at my frantic, striving self from a few years ago. So much has changed!
One last question – if you could tell your new-grad self something about finding a career that you love, what would tell her?
It’s ok to not know exactly what you want to do with your life or have solidified your five year plan when you graduate. You’ll learn all sorts of things during your first job out of school. First jobs aren’t usually dream jobs. They are rough, but you’ll begin to discover what you enjoy, what you don’t, and you’ll start to build a marketable skill set for the future. Rest in the fact that you don’t have to know every detail of your future career right now. Use this time to learn, to try new things (even if you aren’t great at them the first time) and to dive into the unknown. Don’t be afraid to ask others about their stories and the things they’ve enjoyed in their own careers – and always make sure to listen and take note of the things they say that resonate with you. These things may be clues for things you should try too!
Want to make sure your resume gets read, not just seen? I’d love to help you out there!
WIDW: Sarah Ruth Boyer, Recruiter
July 19, 2017