Like most twentysomething college students, I have an existential crisis about my future fairly often. I’m sure that I’m not the only one. One complicating factor for me, and many others, is that people don’t just want a job, they want a job that is fulfilling. However, it can be difficult to find a job that aligns with a person’s career goals, while also doing good in the world.
80,000 Hours is a relatively new organization that wants to make that a little bit easier for people. It was started by two college students in 2011 at Oxford University. Benjamin Todd and Will MacAskill, like many people did not know what to do with their careers. Ben and Will did research to try and figure out what to do, and ended up launching 80,000 Hours. It has become the socially conscious career coach that we all wish we had.
80,0000 Hours does research along with academics at Oxford University and have developed several tools to help people. These include an online career guide, supporting articles, tools, and workshops that provide advice on how to maximize the good you do, both in overall career choice, and within a given field. 80,000 Hours is funded by individual donors, so you know the advice they give is objective. They have also displayed a remarkable commitment to transparency, even going as far as listing major mistakes they have made along the way and what steps were taken to fix those mistakes.
This benefits a lot of people, because it can help them find careers that are fulfilling and play to their strengths. This means that the 80,000 hours each person spends at work through their life will feel more meaningful (that’s where the name 80,000 Hours comes from). It also can help socially conscious organizations because it helps connect them to bright, talented people who can help those organizations make a difference. We all benefit because it means that more talent and energy can be put towards the world’s biggest problems.