I have been working at Avaaz Foundation full-time (More than 5 years)
- There's a lot of hope for the world here. Not naive dumb hope, but smart and considered. I find cynicism really draining (and tempting), and there's just not much of it at all.
- There's very few limits on what Avaaz can do in working to change the world. You might have an amazing idea to change the world that costs $1.5 million dollars - it could be raised and actioned within a week.
- The team is AMAZING. Such lovely people! So good at getting stuff done, and being considered and mature professionals. No drama here.
- You grow a tonne. I expected to be here for a few years, learn all there was to learn, and the go elsewhere. But the learning never stops. The leadership training is the best i've seen, management the same, strategy, writing etc etc.
- It's tactically agnostic, meaning, the team takes problems in the world and works out ways to solve them. Rather than only doing reports, or petitions, or lobbying, or stunts. It's really liberating!
- It's intense. Working on the most pressing issues gets tiring. If there's a big event, like the Paris climate talks, the team works hard and you will get tired.
- You have to manage yourself well. For example - the team values feedback, and everyone is giving it to you and asking for it. At some point it's going to touch a sore spot and that's tough. It's also a great learning opportunity. So it depends on the individual. Same with work life balance - the team has a no nonsense policy about it and you need to be excellent at signing off on time/ cutting tasks you can't get done in your time etc. But managing that is your responsibility and if you have bad habits from past jobs it's tough to turn around.
- Remote work. Working from the Africa/ EU or Sth/Nth American timezones is pretty easy for me. There are so many people online to chat with. But if you love woking in person with your colleagues, and there's not others people in your area, it might be tough. Working from other timezones is harder, and will require a lot of effort from you to reach out to others etc.
Advice to Management
Keep it rolling.
Filled out a very lengthy personalized questionnaire about why I thought I would be a good fit at Avaaz, my work experience, etc. This process took quite some time. Then received an additional email some time later asking me to give a detailed response about architecting their system, which they expected would take up to an hour. At this point, I had some additional questions about the nature of the role, the team's size, etc. as the job posting had been rather vague, and it's unreasonable to expect someone to spend multiple hours on an interview before even figuring out whether or not the job is a good fit. I received a form response about how they'd be able to give me more information about the job once I'd answered their technical question. I passed -- there are plenty of other companies that are willing to at least chat with me and get some additional detail about the job given my credentials (degree from a top 5 engineering university, have worked for one of the tech giants). I recommend that they streamline their process and get some better HR folks in place who have more of an interest in ensuring that a job is a mutual fit, and not just having people jump through hoops for the sake of it.
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