A former client sent me a link to Idealist.Org, which is dedicated to volunteerism and nonprofit careers.
Now, I have no illusion whatsoever that working in a nonprofit organization means that you won't have to put up with politics, petty squabbling, annoying colleagues, bad bosses, miserable working conditions, overwork, crappy pay, miserly vacations, lack of appreciation, idiotic decisions, no-win strategies, and all the other ills that attend any workplace. (Hey, let's face it, even in a one-person shop you can end up with most of these ills - and more.)
But what you will do have greater likelihood of finding in a nonprofit is more meaning than you might automatically derive from working in, say, a conglomerate that cells cigarettes, or a tech company that makes software that spies on employees.
I've been on over to Idealist a few times, and have recommended it to a couple of people.
Idealist.org is part of Actions Without Borders, a non-government, non-political, non-religious organization,which for over a decade, has been dedicated to connecting "people, organizations, and resources to help build a world where all people can live free and dignified lives."
...is guided by the common desire of our members and supporters to find practical solutions to social and environmental problems, in a spirit of generosity and mutual respect.
Ah, unless you are the world's foremost cynic, that's a breath of fresh air you just felt.
A while back, I looked at local job postings.
There was a job at Actors Shakespeare Project (ASP) - a really tremendous theater company that brings Shakespeare to life in a way I've never seen before - and I don't mean by dumbing it down and making it "relevant". I've been to a half-dozen of their productions, and for the most part I've experienced Shakespeare in a new way when I see their performances.
Shakespeare is something I've been fooled by.
Like a lot of Americans, if something is performed in a pompous British accent, I have a hard time figuring out if the acting is any good.
But, for me, ASP always manages to find the emotional truth in the play. I get Ophelia. I get Cordelia. I get Prospero in ways that I haven't before.
Idealist also had a job at the Unitarian Universalist Association, which has its Vatican right up the street from where I live.
Although what I really like about the UUA is that they don't have a Vatican.
If for some reason, I had to join a religion other than ex-Catholic/cultural-Catholic, I'd be a Unitarian.
Secular humanist all the way!
Oh, I know a lot of religious people despise them for their lack of ironclad conviction, their question authority, their question mark in general, their tolerance for non-theism. And I know a lot of atheists/agnostics who despise them for being non-believers at heart but lacking the courage to just let "it" (i.e., organized religion) just go.
But, hell - not that I believe there is one - that's what I like and admire about UUA.
The Vilna Shul was also on the list of those with jobs. (This link takes you to a site with 360 degree views of synagogues. You have to go find the Vilna Shul once you get there.)
The location of the Vilna Shul is almost as close as that of the UUA, just up and over The Hill from my home.
Oh, the job is just a fairly low-end admin function, and I'm sure they'd probably prefer someone who's actually Jewish, but I am someone who knows an awful lot about Jewish history and culture for a schiksa. I think I'd be feel right at home there.
The list goes on....lots of places that sound like they'd be interesting to work at.
Now, just I have no illusion that working in a nonprofit is all gooey grand and glorious, I also understand that idealists can work in organizations that are for profit. And for organizations that I, personally, might find less than ideal. (You can be an idealist about promoting creationism, or opposing gay marriage, or about working in a hedge fund, I suppose.)
Still, there's something kind of sweet about Idealist.org, and I think I'll keep grazing over their occasionally.
Who knows? I might even find the ideal job.