Ali has created a terrific employment resource for the outdoor biz- Basecamp on Facebook. We talk about her career, how she handles her Dad’s sudden passing, and a lot more.
First Exposure to the Outdoors
I grew up camping and sailing and skiing. I grew up in Los Angeles right in the heart of it, in the Hollywood hills. My dad was always very adventurous. My mom came along for the ride, we did a lot of camping up in the Sierras and we would take family ski trips to big bear and Tahoe. My Dad was a big sailor, so we would sail across to Catalina Island. I actually went to summer camp out there, a sleepaway camp on Catalina Island. Didn’t learn to scuba dive but we would do backpacking trips and rock climbing and all that sort of stuff. So as much as I was a city kid, I really was that pretty involved in the active lifestyle from an early age.
Things we talked about
Basecamp on Facebook
I think that in the end, even though the jobs are within the outdoor industry, they are still jobs. And so if you’re trying to transfer into the industry and are already at your mid-level career you have to think about the skills you’ve picked up and how are those relatable to a job that you’re applying for. So being able to really speak to the job responsibilities in your cover letter and your past experiences and how they relate is huge.
If you’re just trying to get your foot in the door for the first time, you know, try going to the outdoor retailer, try to meet with brands that interest you, be open to rolling up your sleeves, and starting from the ground up. I know a lot of people who have gotten their start as interns and stayed with companies for years and years in this industry and worked their way up into pretty senior positions. Some of that starts at retail too, you see that a lot in this industry. People who maybe work at the Patagonia store and then kind of worked their way up or rei, another great company to work for that promotes people from within.
Be vocal on base camp. Don’t be shy, reach out, introduce yourself, you know, ask questions and be specific with your questions, as specific as you can. And offer as much information as you can about who you are, what you do, what you’re interested in the outdoor industry, what related experience you have in the outdoor industry. The more specific, the more likely somebody will see it and think, oh, that’s exactly what I’m looking for. Or be able to link you to an opportunity that is a good match.
Other Outdoor Activities
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Running Home: A Memoir by Katie Arnold
Best Gear Purchase under $100
Connect with Ali
Basecamp on Facebook