Advice From Two Founders On Landing Your Web3 Dream Job

Despite the notoriously volatile crypto market, Web3 remains an intriguing new horizon for today's artists and professionals. But as anyone with experience in innovative industries knows, securing that "perfect-fit" job can be challenging. Between layoff cycles, gate-kept recruiting practices and nepotism (or lack thereof, when you don't have an "in" to the club), companies regularly overlook talent and miss the mark when it comes to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).

Web3 is providing us an opportunity to update the recruitment process. In some cases, blockchain technology itself can revolutionize how teams work together and how leaders can connect with talent worldwide. Simultaneously, the influx of new interest to this burgeoning industry gives us new incentive to revisit long-outdated hiring norms.

A few months ago, BFF spoke to two founders working to upgrade the recruitment process in Web3. Below is a recap of our conversation with CollabWORK founder Summer Delaney and xCollective founder Rachel Price on overcoming Web2's recruitment barriers while recruiting for Web3. We discuss the skill sets that projects are looking for and how can we ensure the talent pipeline is as diverse as possible.

DEI in Web3: Let's start with compensation

Rachel Price
I have spent the last six years hiring for hundreds of startups, mostly in engineering and design roles, as well as marketing roles more recently. My Web3 journey began through the NFT route, particularly women-led projects in late 2021. Conversations with women and nonbinary people in the space brought me to the reality of the difficulty of working and looking for a paid opportunity in the space. So many question marks, such as where to find opportunities, where to start, what Web2 skills translate into the Web3 space, what new skills or terminologies need to be learned and — most importantly — questions about compensation. The method of compensation in some Web3 startups is sometimes far from what the experience is in Web2; we see people getting paid in NFTs, native tokens and fluctuating cryptocurrencies.

These questions spurred the passion to start xCollective to serve as a community for empowering women and nonbinary individuals to get access to paid opportunities in Web3. The most important part for me as a newbie was to encourage myself to shake the imposter syndrome and bring valuable skills from my recruiting perspective into Web3. Communities like BFF with the perspective of onboarding and educating women about Web3 are a huge inspiration behind my reason for focusing on diversity and inclusion. xCollective made a lot of sense to me as the next step for people to be able to navigate job searches outside of learning about Web3 and getting the opportunity to work and earn.

How Web3 is revolutionizing recruiting

Summer Delaney
The tech and ethos of Web3 is an admirable characteristic. The attitude of people coming into the space and the value of community are so important to changing current systems of recruitment. One of the existing problems the blockchain is addressing is of tracking referrals. For example, when people get referred for a job and they go on to apply on LinkedIn and the company’s website, it creates a huge question of who the actual person referring is and who should get the credit for that referral. Blockchain through transparency can be the source of truth for tracking referrals. The blockchain for the first time is giving us the opportunity to track contributions, referrals and people's credentials, as well as allow communities to be part of the vetting process.

CollabWORK incentivizes community members to refer their contacts and be part of the vetting process of hiring. The idea behind this is that people involved in a particular job or community have a firsthand understanding of what the responsibilities for that opening entail. That way, we encourage them to be part of reviewing resumes and part of the vetting and placement process. Web3 is allowing us the opportunity to leverage people’s contacts, communities and passions to make sure we are matching people to the right roles. It has also opened our views of what our relationship with work should look like, the type of jobs we want to be part of and how our values align with the companies that we work for. Most importantly it is giving people access to multiple revenue streams.

Advice for Web3 job seekers

Rachel Price
There is some sort of mystery that plagues the idea of the "appropriate" kind of skill set required to get into Web3 companies. To put it vividly, opportunities abound for a pool of numerous talents in the space. There is vast room for transferable Web2 skill sets, all that is required is to have a basic understanding of what Web3 is, how the space works and how your skill set can be integrated into the particular role you want. Being in control of your narrative and story will set you up for success, particularly in how you craft and present your skill sets to recruiters and companies. Setting up the xCollective workshop opened my eyes to the challenges people have in highlighting themselves. You do not need to have it fully figured out in terms of having a strong knowledge base on Web3 before taking a chance. Apply, learn and grow in the process.

Soft or intangible skills are some prerequisites to guarantee your progress in the Web3 space. The idea of soft skills such as networking, curiosity, empathy, communication, self-awareness and problem-solving skills are important. These skills will come in handy, particularly those of networking and communicating with communities that align with your vision. In essence, building a strong network for yourself will help you excel and develop. Nobody has it fully figured out yet, people are still trying to find their feet in the space and gathering useful lessons along the way. There is so much imposter syndrome that needs to be squashed, majorly because of the nuances that exist with Web3 being a relatively new space. A lot of the mystery is about learning the language of communication and expressing your existing skill set.

Skillsets required for Web3

Summer Delaney
My conversation with a company upskilling Web2 workers to get into Web3 roles led me to understand how difficult it is to predict exactly what the space needs at a particular time. A lot of the job titles in Web3 are usually blanket statements that are very ambiguous. The role of a community manager could translate into different things for a lot of people; it could mean the management of a community discord server, content strategy, content planning, or providing community insights. What I encourage people to do is to have an understanding of their strengths and the gaps they can fill for their desired roles. Being a team player and being comfortable with ambiguity is really important, as a lot of Web3 startups are made up of small teams. This means you may have to fill other roles.

The beauty of projects such as BFF and xCollective is that they have served people in terms of price points for NFTs. Some communities might be too expensive for people to buy into and this should not discourage candidates that do not have the funds. You need to show up that you are well-connected and up-to-date with what’s happening in the community. Developing a presence via engaging and connecting in the various community channels will increase your network. In Web3, your reputation, credentials and networks are more important factors in landing a job than what you are holding in your wallet. The understanding of the ethos of being a community-driven person and the importance of connections are some of the things that recruiters look out for in the vetting process of hiring a candidate.  

How founders can recruit for diverse talents

Rachel Price
There is a whole new opportunity to address some of the biases that exist in Web2 with regard to an inclusive work environment. Web3 companies have a disproportionately male-dominated talent pipeline. The onus is now on companies to push for fairer and more inclusive recruitment. Founders should start with diverse and inclusive core values and build communities that empower people to be open to learning and picking up in the space. Having a clearly defined job description is one thing founders need to outline better. This is an important step in improving the effectiveness of your employees and will ultimately contribute to the success of the organization. Avoid the use of redundant terminologies in describing a role and ensure that responsibilities are clearly listed.

Summer Delaney
Inclusion and diversity are really about meeting people where they are. Targeting more diverse voices and talents would require finding groups that are uplifting those talents and partnering with them. An opportunity to meet diverse talents would be by hosting collaborative office hours with communities to build a network. The narrative of requirements to land a job in Web3 needs to be adjusted, putting into consideration that cryptocurrency and NFTs have not been around for too long. This will encourage people to apply and learn in the space. The global diversity of the space provides an opportunity to spread opportunities beyond a particular region, scouting for talents globally should also come with providing the right resources for these talents to pick up.

Read More: We're Entering The Era Of Decentralized Workplaces

Emmanuel Ehiz is a content and communication strategist currently writing cool things in Web3. Reach out at 📧

This article and all the information in it does not constitute financial advice. If you don’t want to invest money or time in Web3, you don’t have to. As always: Do your own research.

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