Excelling in Your Job Search

CareerCast - Life-long Career Development

Laura Dodd Ready for a job search? Want to increase your chances of success? Meet Laura Dodd, career ethnographer, author of Dig This Gig, and former television and film producer. In this CareerCast, Laura shares her research, stories from interviews with industry leaders, and practical experience on how to excel in your next job search today, tomorrow, or in the future.

Aired January 20, 2012

When Laura Dodd graduated from college, she wasn’t sure what she wanted to “be” when she grew up. The more she listened, the more she realized that most of her peers didn’t know either. Part of the problem, she thought, was that no one really understood what’s behind nebulous job titles, and the behind-the-scenes details of the often zig-zag paths people take en route to a career. À la Studs Terkel’s iconic book, Working, Laura’s fascination was with how her generation was negotiating the ”job ladder’ of today’s growing industries.

The journey to demystify job titles landed her in the offices of industry leaders whom she interviewed about their own early career days. Well-known veterans in their own right—economist Jeffrey Sachs, Georgia Congressman John Lewis, and CEO of Mountain Hardware Topher Gaylord, for example—reflected on the lessons they had learned from the victories and bruises collected along the way. 

Laura grew up in New Orleans and then traveled up the Mississippi River, figuratively, to attend Washington University in St. Louis. After graduation, she embarked to the other LA—Los Angeles—where she spent six years working in television and film production. In 2009, she moved to the east coast to write Dig This Gig and to attend Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She recently graduated with her master’s degree. She currently lives in New York City.

Dig This Gig: How to Find Your Dream Job—Or Invent It by Laura Dodd (2011)

Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 3.0 by Jay Conrad Levinson and David E. Perry (2011)

Headhunter Hiring Secrets: The Rules of the Hiring Game Have Changed… Forever! by Skip Freeman (2010)

Use Your Head to Get Your Foot in the Door by Harvey Mackay (2010)

You’re Better Than Your Job Search by Marc Cenedella and Matthew Rothenberg (2010)

Get the Job You Want, Even When No One’s Hiring by Ford R. Myers (2009)

Over 40 & You’re Hired! by Robin Ryan (2009)

Your Next Move: The Leader’s Guide to Navigating Major Career Transitions by Michael D. Watkins (2009)

Over-40 Job Search Guide: 10 Strategies for Making Your Age an Advantage in Your Career by Gail Geary (2005)

The Unwritten Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search by Orville Pierson (2005)