In order to find a career you love, you have to know what you want. Great careers don’t just happen; they’re formed by taking advantage of opportunities, setting goals, and making connections with the people who can help you get the job you want. On this episode of Find Your Dream Job, Alisyn Maggiora (https://www.linkedin.com/in/alisynmaggiora/) and I discuss how setting clear goals, developing her personal network, and pursuing informational interviews allowed her to get her dream job, even in an industry that she had no experience in. Learn more about Alisyn’s career history below in this installment of our Success Stories series (https://www.macslist.org/articles/success-stories).
What do you do for a career? Who do you work for?
I am an administrative professional with a focus on the non-profit energy industry. I work for the NW Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) (https://neea.org/).
How long did it take you to find this job?
How did you find your job? What resources did you use? What tool or tactic helped the most?
I first found my job on Mac’s List and ultimately, networked my way into the position. I volunteered at a few conferences and events in the industry I was looking to transition into. I networked at those events and followed up with people to learn more about their work and possible opportunities. Eventually, paths started to cross and I received a pivotal recommendation for the position and company I was most excited about.
What was the most difficult part of your job search? How did you overcome this challenge?
Maintaining resilience and confidence when opportunities didn’t pan out. I kept the faith that the right opportunity would come along and continued to find ways to connect with people in the industry and discern what I was most interested in. I thought of it as both relationship building and a learning opportunity.
What is the single best piece of advice you would offer other job-seekers?
Get really clear about the kind of work you want to focus on AND the environment/culture in which you want to do it. Put your greatest effort into the types of opportunities that align most with the direction you want to go (applications, volunteering, etc.); don’t just plaster your resume all over the place and expect that to get you something you’ll be really happy with.
Network and volunteer for activities that are related to the work you want to do; have conversations with people – build a web. If you’re clear in expressing what you want and stay curious throughout the process, people will usually reciprocate interest in you.
Why do you love your job?
The size of the organization, culture, and mission support the environment I thrive in. I get to work on projects that interest me and I work with smart, passionate people that have similar personal and professional interests.