September 20, 2019, 01:01:16 AM

Author Topic: Employment issues  (Read 126 times)

Offline J.R. Darewood

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Employment issues
« on: July 04, 2019, 10:19:15 AM »
ScarletBea's note: I've moved these posts from the "Depression etc" thread because I feel they address a different issue. Let's have a separate thread for employment advice (similar to the "Domestic issues" thread for stuff around the house).
I hope this is ok with the people involved?



I'm nervous about this job application for a job I really want, but that's definitely outta my league.  Can I post my cover letter here for editing advice?
« Last Edit: July 06, 2019, 05:30:28 PM by ScarletBea »

Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2019, 11:04:14 AM »
I'm nervous about this job application for a job I really want, but that's definitely outta my league.  Can I post my cover letter here for editing advice?
Sure, or if you prefer to send it via PM, also ok
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Offline xiagan

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2019, 11:16:00 AM »
Yep!

And you should definitely try even if you think it's out of your league.
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Online Eli_Freysson

Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2019, 12:06:57 AM »
Go right ahead, JR.
I'll notify your next of kin... that you sucked!

Offline Bender

Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2019, 12:28:59 AM »
Results become immaterial when you don't apply.

Just go on ahead.
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Offline J.R. Darewood

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2019, 09:24:17 PM »
Okay here it is.  I feel like it is too long.  It has to be short and to the point for the recruiter, but comprehensive and eloquent if it makes it past the recruiter to the hiring committee. It still needs to be proofread too.

Gaaahhhhh it's so stressful!!!

Here's the job description: https://www.culturalsurvival.org/news/job-opening-executive-director

Spoiler for Hiden:

Dear Mr. Moran:

As an anthropologist and an indigenous rights activist, I have long admired the work of Cultural Survival and was very excited when Barbara Rose-Johnston suggested I apply for the position of Executive Director. I align perfectly with Cultural Survival’s core values, I have broad experience managing nonprofit and research programs on four continents, my expertise in visual anthropology will parlay well into overseeing CS Quarterly and indigenous media programs, and my collaborations with development directors and grant writers has offered me insight into a diverse range of funding streams and how to access them.

Very much in line with Cultural Survival’s mission, my work conducting research and overseeing programs in Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mali, Niger, and the US has been about strengthening the voices of people in the crosshairs of colonial development practices and identifying effective resistance strategies.  I’ve found both inspiration and guidance from indigenous communities I’ve worked with: Amazonian groups confronting mining interests, Saharan pastoralists confronting climate change, and Indonesian ethnic minorities facing violent political repression. A leadership role Cultural Survival would be an exciting chance to translate the political innovations of my indigenous mentors into global action, working together to confront the colonialism that has plagued us for centuries.

I write this letter from the Ecuadorian Amazon, where the pan-Amazonian confederations CONFENIAE and COICA have made great advances defending their territory, the key to indigenous livelihoods and continued existence as peoples. Their work includes the exciting things that Cultural Survival funds-- indigenous radio, alternative economies, and political advocacy in support of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)—but also a “new realities” initiative: finding ways to enroll urbanized indigenous youth in the struggle, valorizing their skills as inter-cultural mediators and uniting their class struggle with the struggles of remote indigenous territories. Like COICA has done across the Amazon, Cultural Survival is well positioned to extend its reach as a network facilitating skill-sharing, solidarity, and the scaling-up of new indigenous rights strategies.

Converting grassroots knowledge and political will into actionable advocacy has been central to every role I’ve held.  At the California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV) I converted a simple get-out-the-vote program into an environmental justice lobbying and leadership development program. As a facilitator of the voices of those most affected by environmental injustice, I was asked to join the board of directors of their multi-million-dollar PAC, as well as several other PACs. Some of my work in Indonesia involved designing a program to teach young homeless musicians to engage in media advocacy. At BARA, I was focused on translating Bambara and Tuareg voices into advocacy videos used to promote changes in development agency practices. At the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) I brought the voices and insights of survivors into our outreach and training strategies, building their capacity to do their own outreach in the process. I was not only a spokesperson for CAST on Spanish radio and television, I trained survivors in media relations strategies.

My work has frequently involved facilitating remote partnerships and teamwork across great geographical and cultural divides to empower bottom-up social change.  My role directing media-advocacy programs for the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology (BARA), the British Red Cross, and Oxfam America involved negotiating between academic institutions, American and European NGOs, West African nonprofits, and on-the-ground beneficiaries.  I coordinated the simultaneous efforts of staff and volunteers in 4 countries.

In addition to community relations, I also bring organizational, administrative and fundraising expertise to the table. Having managed substantial government and foundation grants for my own research and nonprofit programs, I am adept at administration and interfacing with institutional funders. At CAST, I managed our training and outreach program’s budget, including re-granting to partner organizations. I was the point person for our interactions with funding agencies like the US Office of Trafficking in Persons and the UN Office of Drugs and Crime, including annual and quarterly reports.

Frequently based in Los Angeles, my network includes a wide range of development directors, donors, and foundations in an environment very willing to give to causes like Cultural Survival. In my previous roles coordinating, managing and designing programs as well as sitting on the Board of Directors of two political action committees (PACs), I spoke at meetings attended by prospective donors, networking events, workshops and media events, communicating the life experiences of the vulnerable to the wealthy, and establishing the importance of our programs. 

I have a broad range of experience as a boundary-spanner between communities, organizations, the media, governments and foundations. I would love to put that experience to work for Cultural Survival, growing the organization, and expanding its role in the global movement for indigenous rights.

Sincerely,

« Last Edit: July 05, 2019, 09:31:17 PM by J.R. Darewood »

Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2019, 09:53:08 PM »
I'd give you an interview ;D

It does seem too long for a cover letter, including lots of things that I would assume were already in your CV?
Some of the information might be easier to read if presented in bullet points too - I'm not sure how busy the recruiters are, how much they like to read, and I fear that if they see such a long letter they will glaze over most of it. At least with the bullet points, the information would be more easily processed?

This is my initial reaction, I might try to look at it more carefully tomorrow - I'm sure you'll get good feedback from the forum writers (also @JMack, have you seen this?)
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Offline JMack

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2019, 03:42:32 AM »
Hi, @J.R. Darewood:

I agree with SBea that the letter is long. I took a very quick scan just now. I’ll reply more fully tomorrow.
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Offline J.R. Darewood

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2019, 07:10:15 AM »
Okay here it is.  I feel like it is too long.  It has to be short and to the point for the recruiter, but comprehensive and eloquent if it makes it past the recruiter to the hiring committee. It still needs to be proofread too.

Gaaahhhhh it's so stressful!!!

Here's the job description: https://www.culturalsurvival.org/news/job-opening-executive-director

Spoiler for Hiden:

Dear Mr. Moran:

As an anthropologist and an indigenous rights activist, I have long admired the work of Cultural Survival and was very excited when Barbara Rose-Johnston suggested I apply for the position of Executive Director. I align perfectly with Cultural Survival’s core values, I have broad experience managing nonprofit and research programs on four continents, my expertise in visual anthropology will parlay well into overseeing CS Quarterly and indigenous media programs, and my collaborations with development directors and grant writers has offered me insight into a diverse range of funding streams and how to access them.

Very much in line with Cultural Survival’s mission, my work conducting research and overseeing programs in Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mali, Niger, and the US has been about strengthening the voices of people in the crosshairs of colonial development practices and identifying effective resistance strategies.  I’ve found both inspiration and guidance from indigenous communities I’ve worked with: Amazonian groups confronting mining interests, Saharan pastoralists confronting climate change, and Indonesian ethnic minorities facing violent political repression. A leadership role Cultural Survival would be an exciting chance to translate the political innovations of my indigenous mentors into global action, working together to confront the colonialism that has plagued us for centuries.

I write this letter from the Ecuadorian Amazon, where the pan-Amazonian confederations CONFENIAE and COICA have made great advances defending their territory, the key to indigenous livelihoods and continued existence as peoples. Their work includes the exciting things that Cultural Survival funds-- indigenous radio, alternative economies, and political advocacy in support of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)—but also a “new realities” initiative: finding ways to enroll urbanized indigenous youth in the struggle, valorizing their skills as inter-cultural mediators and uniting their class struggle with the struggles of remote indigenous territories. Like COICA has done across the Amazon, Cultural Survival is well positioned to extend its reach as a network facilitating skill-sharing, solidarity, and the scaling-up of new indigenous rights strategies.

Converting grassroots knowledge and political will into actionable advocacy has been central to every role I’ve held.  At the California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV) I converted a simple get-out-the-vote program into an environmental justice lobbying and leadership development program. As a facilitator of the voices of those most affected by environmental injustice, I was asked to join the board of directors of their multi-million-dollar PAC, as well as several other PACs. Some of my work in Indonesia involved designing a program to teach young homeless musicians to engage in media advocacy. At BARA, I was focused on translating Bambara and Tuareg voices into advocacy videos used to promote changes in development agency practices. At the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) I brought the voices and insights of survivors into our outreach and training strategies, building their capacity to do their own outreach in the process. I was not only a spokesperson for CAST on Spanish radio and television, I trained survivors in media relations strategies.

My work has frequently involved facilitating remote partnerships and teamwork across great geographical and cultural divides to empower bottom-up social change.  My role directing media-advocacy programs for the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology (BARA), the British Red Cross, and Oxfam America involved negotiating between academic institutions, American and European NGOs, West African nonprofits, and on-the-ground beneficiaries.  I coordinated the simultaneous efforts of staff and volunteers in 4 countries.

In addition to community relations, I also bring organizational, administrative and fundraising expertise to the table. Having managed substantial government and foundation grants for my own research and nonprofit programs, I am adept at administration and interfacing with institutional funders. At CAST, I managed our training and outreach program’s budget, including re-granting to partner organizations. I was the point person for our interactions with funding agencies like the US Office of Trafficking in Persons and the UN Office of Drugs and Crime, including annual and quarterly reports.

Frequently based in Los Angeles, my network includes a wide range of development directors, donors, and foundations in an environment very willing to give to causes like Cultural Survival. In my previous roles coordinating, managing and designing programs as well as sitting on the Board of Directors of two political action committees (PACs), I spoke at meetings attended by prospective donors, networking events, workshops and media events, communicating the life experiences of the vulnerable to the wealthy, and establishing the importance of our programs. 

I have a broad range of experience as a boundary-spanner between communities, organizations, the media, governments and foundations. I would love to put that experience to work for Cultural Survival, growing the organization, and expanding its role in the global movement for indigenous rights.

Sincerely,


So given everyone's advice I'm playing with this:

Spoiler for Hiden:

Having long admired the work of Cultural Survival, I was very excited when Barbara Rose-Johnston suggested I apply for the position of Executive Director.

1) I align perfectly with Cultural Survival’s core values,
2) I have broad experience managing nonprofit and research programs on four continents,
3) my expertise in visual anthropology will parlay well into overseeing CS Quarterly and indigenous media programs, and
4) my collaborations with development directors and grant writers has offered me insight into a diverse range of funding streams and how to access them.

Core Values

I’ve found both inspiration and guidance from indigenous communities I’ve worked with: Amazonian groups confronting mining interests, Saharan pastoralists confronting climate change, and Indonesian ethnic minorities facing violent political repression. A leadership role Cultural Survival would be an exciting chance to translate the political innovations of my indigenous mentors into global action, working together to confront the colonialism that has plagued us for centuries.

I write this letter from the Ecuadorian Amazon, where the pan-Amazonian confederations CONFENIAE and COICA have made great advances defending their territory, the key to indigenous livelihoods and continued existence as peoples. Their work includes the exciting things that Cultural Survival funds-- indigenous radio, alternative economies, and political advocacy in support of Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)—but also a “new realities” initiative: finding ways to enroll urbanized indigenous youth in the struggle, valorizing their skills as inter-cultural mediators and uniting their class struggle with the struggles of remote indigenous territories. Like COICA has done across the Amazon, Cultural Survival is well positioned to extend its reach as a network facilitating skill-sharing, solidarity, and the scaling-up of new indigenous rights strategies.

Management and Media Expertise

Spoiler for Hiden:

I need to cut all of this down to 1 paragraph:

Quote
Converting grassroots knowledge and political will into actionable advocacy has been central to every role I’ve held.  At the California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV) I converted a simple get-out-the-vote program into an environmental justice lobbying and leadership development program. As a facilitator of the voices of those most affected by environmental injustice, I was asked to join the board of directors of their multi-million-dollar PAC, as well as several other PACs. Some of my work in Indonesia involved designing a program to teach young homeless musicians to engage in media advocacy. At BARA, I was focused on translating Bambara and Tuareg voices into advocacy videos used to promote changes in development agency practices. At the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) I brought the voices and insights of survivors into our outreach and training strategies, building their capacity to do their own outreach in the process. I was not only a spokesperson for CAST on Spanish radio and television, I trained survivors in media relations strategies.

My work has frequently involved facilitating remote partnerships and teamwork across great geographical and cultural divides to empower bottom-up social change.  My role directing media-advocacy programs for the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology (BARA), the British Red Cross, and Oxfam America involved negotiating between academic institutions, American and European NGOs, West African nonprofits, and on-the-ground beneficiaries.  I coordinated the simultaneous efforts of staff and volunteers in 4 countries.

In addition to community relations, I also bring organizational, administrative and fundraising expertise to the table. Having managed substantial government and foundation grants for my own research and nonprofit programs, I am adept at administration and interfacing with institutional funders. At CAST, I managed our training and outreach program’s budget, including re-granting to partner organizations. I was the point person for our interactions with funding agencies like the US Office of Trafficking in Persons and the UN Office of Drugs and Crime, including annual and quarterly reports.

Fundraising

Frequently based in Los Angeles, my network includes a wide range of development directors, donors, and foundations in an environment very willing to give to causes like Cultural Survival. In my previous roles coordinating, managing and designing programs as well as sitting on the Board of Directors of two political action committees (PACs), I spoke at meetings attended by prospective donors, networking events, workshops and media events, communicating the life experiences of the vulnerable to the wealthy, and establishing the importance of our programs. ]

I have a broad range of experience as a boundary-spanner between communities, organizations, the media, governments and foundations. I have a long history of both work and research focused on strengthening the voices of people in the crosshairs of colonial development practices and identifying effective resistance strategies. I would love to put that experience to work for Cultural Survival, growing the organization, and expanding its role in the global movement for indigenous rights.

Sincerely,

« Last Edit: July 06, 2019, 07:12:03 AM by J.R. Darewood »

Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2019, 08:17:52 AM »
That is definitely better, splitting it into sections.
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Offline Bender

Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2019, 01:47:35 PM »
Remove the numbered list. Rest looks fine.
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Offline JMack

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Re: Re: Depression, Struggles and Light at the End of Every Tunnel
« Reply #11 on: July 06, 2019, 04:38:48 PM »
@J.R. Darewood:

Yes, I agree with the others, much better.
I also agree you should replace this numbers with simple bullets.

Meanwhile, here’s a question: What is the biggest challenge currently facing the organization? I note their revenue for 2017 was much higher than 2016, and I think I saw their expenses ran below revenues? So is money good and their challenge is how to effectively deploy it? How would you measure success against key challenges?

On their website, what does it mean to saw they are “indigenous-led” when the acting director doesn’t have an indigenous name in parenthesis after his English name? For that matter, why did the last director leave? I ask in case there is any clear issue that you can address in some way - either explicitly or in a way they can infer.

Something I want you to think about. You aren’t applying for a staff job there. Head of programs or something. You’re applying for Executive Director. You’ve included the fund-raising part, which is key. But what is your vision? How do you lead?

NOTE: I am well-known for complicating simple things (“boiling the ocean” and “straining at gnats”). My thoughts above may be more useful for interview than letter, but there might be something there to consider.

I’ll add other comments here in a series of post-modify-post. These are not in precise order of letter.

1. Replace “chance” with “opportunity.”

2. Look for a better word than “parlay.” Parlez vous? ;)

3. “Align perfectly” goes against my grain somehow. I was looking for “core values” on their site as a thing, but found vision: “Cultural Survival envisions a future that respects and honors Indigenous Peoples' inherent rights and dynamic cultures, deeply and richly interwoven in lands, languages, spiritual traditions, and artistic expression, rooted in self-determination and self-governance.” Can you say, “I fully share CS’s vision of self-determination and self-governance for indigenous peoples, and have spent my professional career working toward this goal...” Or something like that?

4. Is your network frequently based in LA? (Which would imply your network is sometimes based elsewhere.) That’s how the grammar parses. You are frequently based in LA, or you have a largely LA-based network, or...  Does it matter? Can you just talk about the network without the location, or is the location somehow important? Maybe” I have a broad network of [people like this and that], many in the environment of Los Angeles where there is a growing support for this type of [blah blah].”

I may come back later, but I hope this is helpful for now.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2019, 05:10:47 PM by JMack »
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