Career strategy


One of the things that makes the sustainability job search challenging is the diversity of options. There are lots of ways to use your career to have a positive impact on the world – whether that translates into reducing the carbon footprint of a large multinational, or convincing more consumers to buy a fair-trade product.

In my role as an educator at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, I’ve counseled students on hundreds of sustainability and social impact career paths – paths as diverse as the students themselves. One of the most critical steps in the job search process is deciding on what type of function and role you’re focused.

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Join Shannon next Thursday, 27 March 2014, for her 1.5 hour interactive workshop aimed at any freelancers or entrepreneurs looking to build confidence around marketing themselves.

Shannon will let you in on her secrets from 20 years in recruitment, 10 years in sustainability consulting, and the last four years building her own coaching company. She will also share her experiences of working with Acre recruitment’s freelance network, The Bench.

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Our own Shannon Houde, founder of Walk of Life Consulting and preferred coaching partner of Acre and Weinreb Group recruitment, offers expert advice in this Guardian piece on How to get a career in sustainability: hard work, talent and perseverance.

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I’ve been ordering up a storm on Amazon these past few months and I just had to share my best reads with you. There are so many books out there for jobseekers, career changers and ‘what should I do with my life’-ers that it can feel overwhelming! Throw a green, sustainability, social impact, or corporate responsibility lens into the mix, and it’s even tougher to know where to start.

To help you figure out which books are right for you, I’m grouping my favourites together into themes. In today’s blog, the theme is ‘What should I do when I want to do everything?’ Below are my reviews of two books that anyone asking themselves this question should put on their wish-list!

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‘I’m experienced, educated and articulate – so why can’t I get through the first round of interviews?’

If I had a fiver for each time I’ve encountered a jobseeker with that exact problem, I’d be meditating on a Balinese beach rather than tapping away on a keyboard! Selling yourself on paper – whether through the traditional CV or on LinkedIn – is a skill in itself, and here at Walk of Life, we’ve written plenty on how to do it. But wowing the interview panel and making a strong impression in person is a different challenge altogether. Which is why you should take a strategic approach.

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In my recent column on, I advised a community investment manager in the renewable energy sector decide whether to stay put in her current role or seek new pastures.

Sometimes our craving for something new and unknown is what keeps us from feeling happy with what we have. But while it is important to resist the urge for change simply for change’s sake, it is equally important to continue challenging ourselves in order to grow professionally, and thereby feel happy.

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There are so many job sites and boards dedicated to CSR and sustainability careers, it’s all too easy for a jobseeker to feel snowed under by the avalanche of information coming at them through the search engine.

To help you navigate the job search slalom, I’ve selected the best sites on the internet for corporate responsibility, sustainability, environmental, social enterprise, international development and NGO vacancies.

In Part 1 of this 4-part series, I’m drilling down on the top US, UK and International recruitment agency websites on the net.

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My recent ‘Get Focussed, Get results!’ webinar with Net Impact was all about turning passion and personal criteria into dream jobs through focused mapping, so I was delighted to see such fantastic feedback from the Virtual Attendees.

One Net Impact member said “In the six years I’ve been a member, this is the BEST webinar I have attended”, “This is exactly what I needed in the job search process” claimed another, while a third said “I found tremendous value in this. Again, thank you!”

So what exactly was I doing?

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