Thursday, May 31, 2007

Comparing notes with others on The Great Escape

A couple weeks back I had lunch with P. She is currently working, but is also devising an exit strategy for leaving corporate life behind and finding work that is more in tune with her environmental values.

Among other things, we discussed possible points of conflict between idealism and reality. Two potential areas that I see are personal finance/income (unsurprisingly) and internal politics/bureaucracy within a non-profit.

We also talked about a couple of annual events that might educate us further about the non-profit sector: CompassPoint Nonprofit Day on July 12 in San Francisco, and the Craigslist Foundation's Nonprofit Boot Camp on August 18 in Berkeley.

We also threw around the idea of making a field trip to the Ecology Center in Berkeley.

P. has already done some research into the non-profit sector as well as some informational interviews. I'd like to pick her brain in the future about what she learned and what kind of questions she asked.

One big benefit of broadcasting my plans to everyone I know is that I find other birds-of-a-feather who have similar plans, like P. Often, these people might be at a slightly different stage of the journey, and it's fun and informative to compare notes and give and receive advice about the lessons learned on the way. It's also reassuring to know that I'm not the only one travelling this road. It would be neat to start a Silicon Valley Escapees Directory for networking with people who have made or want to make the transition from corporate high-tech into whatever life/career path they find more meaningful and balanced. But I guess I'll put that project somewhere on my list of 10,000 Projects That Would Be Neat To Do :)

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