Going insane with job hunt? Here’s Cards Against Insanity

By Our Reporter
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Cards Against Insanity founders Naishadh Gadani and Karalyn Brown

The pandemic has affected a lot of people forcing them out of the workforce. The price of the coronavirus is also not just an economic crisis with its deepening unemployment, poverty and mental illness but the lack of drive to restart or refocus.

In this context, two employment experts Naishadh Gadani and Karalyn Brown have come up with a unique concept called Cards Against Insanity. This is a new career product the two launched recently and aimed at making the whole process of job searching fun, creative and sane.

Having worked with hundreds of professionals to help them find a great job, the duo realised that job search can be an insane process. So, Gadani and Brown hope the cards will help boost confidence, help build network and, most importantly, help find a great job.

“When you look for a job your world closes in. As you get stressed you lose your creativity. You run out of ideas. You tend to stick to doing the same thing day in and day out—like just relying on applying for jobs online. That’s the worst thing you can do. It’s the least effective way to find a job. So, we’ve created these cards to give you ideas, to give you prompts—that will help you boost your mindset and create a great network,” says Gadani.

To give a bit of background about the experts, Gadani immigrated to Australia from India in 2007. He was already a qualified Mechanical Engineer with extensive experience in sales and marketing. That helped him land his first job as a Sales Engineer. But within 12 months, he was made redundant.

 

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He found a similar position in another company, however in less than six months, he was made redundant again. It was at this point that he started soul-searching, taking a deep look at what he really wanted to achieve in his career moving forward.

He knew he wanted to contribute to others, to inspire and touch people’s lives. And that was the path he took. Today, Gadani is an unemployment warrior and an inspiring mentor coaching hundreds of migrants to discover their true calling and to take the crucial steps needed to achieve their career goals.

Said to be Australia’s most connected career blogger, Brown leads InterviewIQ and Straight to Shortlist Challenge. She has helped hundreds of people find jobs and her clients are from all over the world and senior levels of all professions. 

Brown has written for tier 1 publications including the Australian and the Sydney Morning Herald and featured on Sky News in The Daily Telegraph, the AFR and The Age. She has also co-authored a book “What do employers really want?”.

Brown has headed up recruitment practices in the private sector and managed the recruiting team for a large NSW government utility. She’s also sat on private and public sector interview panels as an independent and assessed as an expert in several assessment centres. 

She started her career graduating with distinction in Land Surveying (of all things), one of only two women in her year. 

After working two years in Albury, she decided she preferred talking to people not trees, so travelled and embarked on a process of experimentation and change to transform her career into recruitment, HR and career coaching. In conversation with Gadani and Brown.

Cards Against Insanity: Pick a card and fast track your career!
■ How did the idea behind Cards Against Insanity come?

The idea came out of our Career Care Package live stream broadcast on LinkedIn and YouTube. We’ve been supporting people with our broadcast ever since the pandemic hit. We know that when people lose their jobs, they become very stressed and fearful. When this happens, the creative part of their brain shuts down, at the very time they need a boost. So, we wanted the cards to prompt job seekers with fresh ideas, mindset boosts and tips on building their network.

We also wanted to provoke curiosity with the name—cards against insanity, and to stop people from just relying on applying for a job online (the maddest thing they can do).

How does it work?

Each card has a new task. We encourage job seekers to do a task a day, and to hack the habit- forming part of their brain by giving themselves a reward immediately after (a high 5).
They can join our live stream career care package, and ask questions. We also bring in experts to talk on a topic.

We also perform the task and give our experience. So people are fully supported.

How does it make job-seeking unique?

Almost 90 per cent of applications employers receive come from online sources (career sites and job boards), yet less than 1 per cent are hired that way. So, one aim of our cards is to get people to take more actions which will give them a much stronger chance of being successful—with networking tasks and fresh ideas to follow.

In terms of statistics, are job hires on the wane now?

There has been talk of skill shortages with borders closed to skilled migration. We saw a lot of people being contacted earlier this year by recruiters—mainly “white collar professionals”. However with the latest lockdowns in Melbourne and Sydney, there is a lot of uncertainty around again. Anecdotally things are quiet.

How do these cards motivate or inspire given the unique times we are in?

If people play our cards and join in our show, they get a wonderful sense of community. We are live every Friday to support them. Community and connection combat loneliness—because when you do it tough alone, you easily lose hope. Many people who have watched our show have used our ideas, made wonderful connections and found jobs. This makes us very proud.


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