Gavriel Kleinwaks

199Joined Aug 2022


Hi, sorry to hear about your experience! I work in a research/project management-type role. My workload fluctuates a huge amount by week, and I do typically work long hours, but even when I have a particularly heavy week, it hardly ever feels like I'm "on call." Within a week, I can largely organize my work as I see fit and I believe this is mostly true for my colleagues in similar roles; the only time we behave as if we are on call is for major deadlines. I occasionally take meetings at weird times due to international partnerships, but always with plenty of advance notice.

And actually, when it comes to ops roles, our head of ops is very encouraging of people protecting their vacation time. I give her a ton of credit for being thoughtful and intentional about how to develop a healthy culture around working hours/protected time, especially given that we're an international organization spread out across time zones. Of course it mattered that she's one of the co-founders and could lay out reasonable expectations--ie, she wasn't going to always be on call, and wouldn't expect anyone else to.

I think unquestionably certain roles are more demanding in hours, responsiveness, or both, but that should be made clear in job descriptions or interviews, and hopefully allow you to make an informed decision--eg, one former colleague was hired for a comms role explicitly described as involving "rapid response," so you can predict that would put you more on call than other roles at the same org.  

So basically, my sense is that:
a) roles in ops & events management will have more "fires to put out" than other roles in the same organization, but also 
b) ops will have more "fires" at some organizations than others, and
c) if someone at a high enough level cares, they can just lay out norms, and that will shape org culture. 

Although my feelings are broadly more optimistic about EA's ability to improve its institutions and move forward than many stances I've seen, the entire trajectory of the FTX blowup has made me prefer the idea of a career that takes me farther away from insular EA bubbles, rather than a career that immerses me in EA bubbles. It's not a huge change--I just used to think that I wouldn't particularly care if I stayed in an EA bubble professionally, and now that seems unwise, making some career choices even more favorable than previously. This article specifically didn't cause the change, but it's something I've been mulling over for a while and I think this simply crystallized the thought for me.

Incidentally I am the 1Day staff member who signed up for screening and can confirm that I'm unreasonably enthusiastic about this idea! Would be happy to explain my thought process to anyone else in the trial demographic who might be interested and would like to talk things through.

Super seconded! I have had a couple of EA-curious friends (who would be a great fit for EA, very passionate and smart and dedicated to positively impacting the world) ask if I would recommend attending  a conference, and had to awkwardly explain that although I loved my experience at EAG, they would probably not get in. I was able to recommend EAGx as a more accessible alternative, but the American EAGx conferences are pretty student-oriented, still have illegible admissions criteria, and wouldn't necessarily present the benefits of EAG as efficiently to post-grads. There NEEDS to be an accessible event I can invite people to. ETA: I think it's fine to have events with different levels of accessibility, it's just frustrating that the current combo doesn't really provide a good entry point/thing to invite people to. Making admissions criteria more legible, especially for EAGx, could help address this.