Let's make some matches!

Welcome to Yenta, an email newsletter for matchmaking. Whether you’re here for jobs/hiring, housing/roommates, romance/hot bodies, or just fun and friends — we’re here for you. I’m your host, Sahar Massachi.

First, let’s go over some structure and explain how this works. Then — Let’s make some matches!

How this system works:

For the past few years, every month or so, I create a post on Facebook asking “who wants to hire? Who is looking for housing? Romance?” etc. (This what I call the #yenta thread). People then find each other in the comments. It really works!

So go here and ask for what you want on the matchmaking thread. That’s the most important thing you can do in this entire newsletter.

Now, we’re layering this newsletter on top of that, with links, ideas, featured jobs, featured hotties, etc. And, if nothing else, it can help notify you that there’s a new #yenta thread up, that you can (and should!) comment on, and find matches.

Lastly, there are two forms you should know about.

  1. Are you looking to date? Fill out this form. I’d love to help, and I have lots of questions. Help us know enough about you so that I recognize your perfect match when I meet them!

  2. Are you interested at all in being hired? Fill out this form. On the regular, people ask me to help them hire. If I have your information close to hand, I’m much likelier to be able to help!

This format (substack) is a bit of an experiment, so expect things to change as we figure it out.

Okay! Let’s Make Some Matches. First — have you ever heard of Content Strategy?

One thing I enjoy in life is finding weird jobs I never thought existed. And, when I moved to the Bay Area a few years ago, I found something new to me: tech firms are so thirsty for former journalists and other wordsmiths. The role is called content strategy, and I’m so delighted it exists. I bet you might be good at it.

Here to tell us more about it is friend Katie Anne Simpson. Let me tell you a bit about Katie. She’s a poet. She’s deeply into the jewish community and ritual in SF. She’s wry and clever. And — lads, she’s single!

Katie, please tell us about content strategy!

UX Writing, Content Strategy, Content Design... a lot of names for a messy field and to be honest, even my mom doesn't get what I do. The best way to explain it is: we write words in apps that help you get shit done. We're thinking through: okay, 'what's the value of FB marketplace that resonates with millions of people... and can be done in less than 50-60 characters'. We're the words that hopefully make your experience a little easier.

Tl;dr: the best UX writing is forgettable. Because you're getting shit done.

Day to day what does this work look like? It depends, but at DocuSign (where I work) there's a ton of variety: from whole flows for new features to error strings (or what I like to call, how to avoid robotic errors like, 'Failed to complete call: try again.') This kind of content doesn't make the NYT bestseller list. It is a constantly evolving puzzle, and one where I get to see the value of my work with happier customers and support teams (less angry calls = good business).

If this kind of challenge sounds exciting, let's talk! I'm looking to hire someone in Chicago and am always down in general to talk the beaaaautiful challenges of this kind of writing.

Wow, Katie! Extremely eligible, giving advice, and also hiring!? What a hot commodity. But, tell us more. Let’s say someone is intrigued by the role. What signs would they look for to see if Content Strategy was the right career to pursue? How did you get into this world, anyway?

How did I get into this line of work? I got lucky: I was a marketing copywriter who happened to work at a company where I had to do both UX copy and marketing copy. From there, I proved my chops/built out my portfolio.

Signs you may be a great fit for UX content/Content strategy:

  1. Empathy: You care about how people experience content. This kind of writing isn't about you. It's about what people understand/feel when they see it.

  2. You can handle critique/feedback/revising your stuff. You will get it. You will get it a lot. And frankly,

  3. You want to/can collaborate. My day is full of meetings. Want to craft copy by yourself in the corner? This. Job. Is. Not. For. You.

  4. Ability to listen: This work often is murky/requires persuading stakeholders. High EQ is really huge for our work in getting people to align and make your way through the various groups you work with (design, product managers, research, developers)

How to get started: Portfolio is honestly a huge huge decision maker for me when I look at potential hires. This doesn't have to be previous years, but sometimes volunteer work, or how you'd overhaul a website page yourself.

But I look at previous experience to see clarity, how you break stuff down, and basically, do you have the chops to be clear and concise?
So if you want to start: Look at the applications you use every day and perhaps try screenshots edits: changing copy. How could things be better?

Wonderful, thank you Katie Anne. If you are interested in learning more about Content Strategy, you can email her here.

If you are interested in learning more about her in an amorous sort way, good call! Let me know, and if I think you’re a good fit, I’ll introduce you.

(Don’t want to go through me? That’s okay, but please be very clear when you contact her what your intentions are. Mixing “let’s be professional” and “let’s be flirty” is a big NO NO NO.)

Interested in being a featured job explainer, job hirer, or featured eligible dater? Drop me line!

Some featured jobs:

The Movement Voter Project is hiring an Operations + Data Coordinator

  • MVP is really good. They’re an effort to take a bunch of money that might normally go to ads for electoral campaigns (boo!) and instead fund a bunch of community organizations to get out the vote and build power for the long term. They’ve been around for a while, they’re very good at what they do, and they’re probably quietly giving a bunch of money with minimal bureaucracy and hassle to some of your favorite organizations.

  • Alex Melman works at MVP. He's not the hiring manager, but he's graciously offering to field basic questions about the organization by email. Let me know if you want an introduction.

David Duhalde is hiring the Program Director for Democratic Socialists of America Fund.

Woah! Here’s what he has to say. Let me know if you want an introduction:

The Democratic Socialists of America Fund is the sister 501c3 to the national activist DSA. I’m on the board. The Fund does educational work including: We Own the Future webinar series; grants to books such as the Eugene V. Debs: A Graphic Biography; sponsoring Young DSA and Socialism conferences; supporting international exchanges; and we are planning more public policy and activist amplification. 

This is our first staff position in several decades. You can read more about the Fund's history here. The opening is a really exciting opportunity for a go-getter and ready to help take a small nonprofit to the next level!

Happy to answer any questions!

Eddy Lazzarin is hiring a data scientist for the Andreessen Horowitz crypto team. Impressive!

Here’s what he has to say. Let me know if you want an introduction:

We're looking for an investor-minded data scientist who is interested in crypto (or even skeptical of crypto) for the Andreessen Horowitz ("a16z") crypto team. This role will help invest the new $515m fund across the most innovative and ambitious protocols, dapps, and projects in crypto. The data science team critically informs investment decisions with on-chain data, ecosystem analytics, and cryptoeconomic simulations.

Feel free to reach out with any questions! I'm available any time, even just to chat about data science or crypto. elazzarin@a16z.com

And don’t forget that Katie Anne, as we talked about earlier, is hiring a content strategist for DocuSign.

Hiring? Want to be featured? Email me.

There are more jobs I know about. And there are a ton more that we collectively know about. Let’s swap leads on the latest Yenta Thread.

How do you find dates/romance/bodies? How are you handling The Plague?

I’d love to know! Tell me, please!

Some personal notes:

I was recently interviewed on the What Origin Podcast. We talked about building communities, corporate culture, the psychic meaning of having a boss, and more. Check it out here.

I’m also writing pretty regularly. In the process of sprucing up my website, I’ve unearthed a bunch of things I wrote years ago, and am importing them in. One thing, that I wrote back in 2014, really struck me: A list of lives I’d enjoy living. Feels poignant to be reading that today. Do you have a similar list?

Ideas for friendship magic adventures:

Remember the internet back when we were young(er)? It felt different back then. It’s not just that technology changed. It’s not just that the population changed. It’s something more ineffable. There used to be a sort of sense of magic and playtime in the air.

Well, what if I told you it never fully went away? Thanks to Kellian, I stumbled upon this amazing list of “remote/online immersive and interactive experiences”. Think: amazing art immersive live theater interactive … wonderful things I can’t wait to try!

Here’s the link to a huge list.

Seems like many of these would be more fun with a friend or two, eh? There are virtual escape rooms. Virtual bars. So many games!

Speaking of which:

What if we all played games together?

I love games. I also love friends. I also love spontaneity. I’m thinking of creating a group chat of friends where anyone at any time can propose “hey who wants to play <board game X> right now?”. Kind of like a pool of people for pickup basketball, only' it’d be pickup Dominion or what-have-you.

Is this a good idea? Would you do such a thing?

Finishing up:

Thanks for reading! I hope you found it useful. If you have anything to share, even just your thoughts or opinions, I’d love to hear from you. And, again, this newsletter is in some way just a mechanism for me to remind you of a few things:

Do THESE THINGS for the matchmaking magic to happen:

Yours in friendship,