I like sign-holders, and even tried to be one myself once. People hold signs for many reasons, but they share one thing in common - they are not afraid of being judged by the opinions of others in public. At SXSW, which is the biggest conference for geeks, I met one sign-holder who got my attention. He was a man in his 20s, holding a sign saying "drop your business card for a chance to employ me".
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are more unemployed people in American than the population of Louisiana, Oregon and Oklahoma combined. Getting an interview itself is like rejection therapy, let alone a job-offer.
While job-seeking could be soul-draining, I wonder how many have tried the out-of-box tactics Anup employed. I don't know how many jobs he can land this way, but I do know he turned the table and gathered more than 20 applications/connections in one day. And, he got a temporary job deal from me. I will follow up on this adventure.
I often think about things in term of upside/downside. For what Anup was trying, the downside (I can't think of any) was so low, and upside (finding a job) is so high, I wonder why don't every job-seeker try this? Why didn't I try it?
Learning: 1. Many people look for jobs. One sure way to differentiate yourself from the herd is creativity. 2. When you bid for a position, you are the weaker party. When people bid for your service, you are the stronger party. Try be the stronger party, even by rewriting the rules of the game. 3. If project gives you limited downside, and upmost upside, you are doing yourself a diservice by not doing it.