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Test Drive Your Dream Job 129

Posted by Zonk
from the go-find-yourself dept.
ches_grin writes "'Vocation Vacations' has a simple concept--allow folks to try out a new career before leaving their current job. Participants get paired with mentors in their chosen field and then spend 2-3 days fully immersed in life as a brewer, dog-trainer, sword-maker, or whatever their fantasy gig is. People are willing to pay to do someone else's job." From the article: "The idea is relatively simple. Participants pay anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand (transportation, lodging, etc., aren't included) to experience life as, say, a chocolatier, a fashion designer, or a race-car driver. The time spent immersed in their fantasy job allows them to get a 360-degree perspective without the risk of quitting their own jobs or investing heavily in a new career. "
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Test Drive Your Dream Job

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  • Bending robot anyone?
    • by ari_j (90255)
      I'm going to start my own vacation company, with blackjack. And hookers. In fact, forget the vacation company.
  • So... (Score:5, Funny)

    by rock217 (802738) <slashdot@rocks h o u s e.com> on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:34PM (#15225306) Homepage Journal
    When do I meet Jenna Jameson now?
  • I wonder if some pimp would let me shadow him for a couple of weeks.
  • What about the current employers of the person who wants to try this? I somehow doubt they'd take it well if an employee told them they wanted to try out another job for a few days. Might make them wonder if this employee is thinking of quitting... and they may decide to fire them before they quit voluntarily.

    I don't think there's any real way of making it look like a harmless activity if you're the employee wanting to try it. Call in sick for a few days, maybe...?
  • by neoshroom (324937) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:36PM (#15225313)
    FACILITATING A FANTASY. Enter a two-year-old Portland (Ore.)-based company called Vocation Vacations, a business that gives people the opportunity to "test drive" their dream jobs. Creating temporary but intense mentor/apprenticeship experiences, Vocation Vacations enlists professionals from a variety of fields -- everything from winemakers and makeup artists to architects and sword makers -- and pairs them with people who fantasize about leaving their day jobs and want spend a few days in a profession that they had previously thought beyond their reach.

    Facilitating fantasy, eh? My dream job: Porn actor. Where do I sign?

    __
    Elephant Essays [elephantessays.com] -- Custom Research Papers and More
    • Hey, you have to pay to do this, and prostitution is a no-no. How many people can you expect that are paid to have sex get paid a little bit more to not have sex, anyways? Spend the money on a camcorder and DIY.
      • Hey, you have to pay to do this, and prostitution is a no-no.

        Says you - in the USA there are places like that county outside of Vegas and most of the rest of the first world where prostitution is a yes, yes, oh baby YES!
      • However, Kurth says there's a limit to the types of career vocations he will pursue. For instance, he says he recently turned down an offer from a pornography producer who wanted to become a mentor.

        I guess, no luck...

        Paul
    • Porn actor is really a pretty bad job. The expectations are huge (no pun intended) - can you get it up on demand, at any time of day, and keep it up for hours of filming, before releasing on demand? And the rewards aren't great - the pay sucks and I'd be surprised if you got much sexual pleasure out of it.
      • Good lord that's pretty much like being a computer programmer. Even the sexual pleasure part is the same.
      • Actually, the longevity is much a matter of good cuts in the film and multiple takes as it is actual stamina. Still, do you really want sex to be just a job? While I normally avoid citing fiction in regards to reality, take a look at "Post Production" in Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk.
    • Heh. cool. don't forget you'll be required to play on both teams as part of your "intense mentor/apprenticeship experience"
  • Sweet! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mad_Rain (674268) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:37PM (#15225317) Journal
    I look forward to learning how to kill you soon! [slashdot.org]
  • by NotQuiteReal (608241) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:37PM (#15225319) Journal
    I work at home and collect money from people who pay me to "shadow" me at work.

    That's it. That's how I make my living.

    Work at home! Make money now! Call me!



    • Okay, Mr. Ralsky, who gave you a keyboard in jail?


  • by suv4x4 (956391) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:38PM (#15225323)
    List of jobs to test from the top of my mind:

    - President of USA: will find weapons of mass destruction in my ex-employer's building and nuke them to save the world
    - CEO and CSO of Microsoft: will make Windows and IE open source
    - Owner && President of Playboy Magazine (not just one magazine, the company): will hang around plenty of naked good looking blonde chicks
    - Donald Trump: I'll confess it's a friggin' rug and be done with it

    • Owner && President

      someone's been coding all night eh...
    • Yeah, what would Microsoft's advertisement on this service look like?

      Test-drive Microsoft CEO position!

      You'll learn how to:

      - Throw chairs across a room, with accuracy!
      - Learn how to "fucking kill" someone, the Microsoft way!
      ...And More!

    • Owner && President of Playboy Magazine (not just one magazine, the company): will hang around plenty of naked good looking blonde chicks


      Hef may be the owner, but his daughter (Christie) has run the company for quite some time. (IIRC, she started when she was 41-42, so Hef had to have some confidence in her; i.e. to just hand it over out of the blue).

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Being Commander Taco - that's my dream job!
  • by crazdgamer (846581) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:40PM (#15225334) Journal
    Why would I want to work during my vacation? IT'S MY VACATION!

    It doesn't matter that it's a different job! It's WORK! And work is something I'm against in any form!

    I'll pass.
    • Some people have a dream job that they want to pursue. Before making the plunge it would be nice to get their feet wet - to see if it was really all they thought it would be. I'm a bit skeptical that a few days is enough to make that kind of a decision but regardless it is a good experiance, and a unique niche company.

      They are catering to a very specific clientele - people looking at making a career change, most likely to a self-owned business, and most likely with a decent amount of money in the bank (by
    • A lot of people go to Yosemite and take a hike when they go on vacation. That's certainly work. Do you consider them strange?
      • Not something to posit on slashdot.
      • No... because they're doing something they want and like to do...

        But this is like... doing another person's job...

        Do you not see the difference? Doing another persons job is still compulsory (i.e. you have to follow regulations and direction and whatever). Going to Yosemite and hiking at your leisure is not compulsory.

        And my inital post was said tongue-in-cheek. I didn't think I'd need to explain that, but so it goes.
    • >> Why would I want to work during my vacation? IT'S MY VACATION!
      >>
      >> It doesn't matter that it's a different job! It's WORK! And work is something I'm against in any form!
      >>
      >> I'll pass.

      then I must be messed up... the last vacation I took was spent volunteering as medical staff at a scout jamboree... my vacation time for this year is split up in to dingle or pairs of days throught the year to cover specific special events that I'm volunteering at ( a weekend as a medic at a re
    • Why would I want to work during my vacation? IT'S MY VACATION!

      What's more important -- that you enjoy yourself as much as possible for 2-3 days or that you have a fulfilling career that prevents you from being miserable for the rest of your life? Isn't it better to squander a few days during a job that sucks to give yourself the courage and peace of mind to leave it for a job that you actually look forward to going to each day?

      Geez. Some people are just completely incapable of taking the long view.
  • Interesting idea! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BigZaphod (12942) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:43PM (#15225341) Homepage
    If anything, it'd be a fun way to gain a wide variety of experiences that would normally be very hard to get - even if you never had any desire to change careers. It'd beat a passive trip to a museum, that's for sure...
  • by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:46PM (#15225359)
    I'm filling out the on-line app, but for the life of me, I cannot recall what it said on Ron Jeremy's business card. Little help?
  • by catch23 (97972) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:49PM (#15225376)
    So would they be able to replicate the full experience in just 3 days?
  • Shocked. (Score:5, Funny)

    by oliverk (82803) on Friday April 28, 2006 @09:51PM (#15225381)
    No one's asked to be CowboyNeal yet! What, did you all just miss the tie-in?
  • by FerretFrottage (714136) on Friday April 28, 2006 @10:10PM (#15225460)
    So I can see how my old job is going.

  • My Dream Job (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Physician (861339)
    My dream job would definitely be slashdot admininstator. (*rubs brown off nose)
    • n00b, admins don't dictate your karma man.....
      but you made me laugh, and i think that's extremely commendable. give 'im a point or two boys!
  • Missing URL (Score:5, Informative)

    by The Cisco Kid (31490) * on Friday April 28, 2006 @10:25PM (#15225512)
    It apparently didn't occur to the morons and businessweek to include say, the address to Vocation Vacations website. Easily found of course (vocationvacations.com) but still, you'd think that in these modern times we live in, something like that would be automatically included.
    • by rehannan (98364)
      It apparently didn't occur to The Cisco Kid to include say, the link to Vocation Vacations website. Easily found of course (vocationvacations.com [vocationvacations.com]) but still, you'd think that in these modern times we live in, something like that would be automatically included.
  • Beta (Score:1, Funny)

    by TheCarlMau (850437)
    Sweet! I can beta test r3@l l!f3 now!
  • by Random Q. Hacker (137687) on Friday April 28, 2006 @10:36PM (#15225547)

    George Bush, for instance, has tried several fantasy jobs. He tried out being a conservative Christian (before the election), being President for a few days (before September 11th), and being someone who would swear to "preserve, protect and defend the Constitution" (before each term).

    I wonder which job he'll try out next? Oooh maybe President Truman dropping the A-bomb? Or a KING? What fun!!

  • To show them how bad their dream job potentially sucks...

    CS programs in colleges would suffer for it.
  • An ISS astronaut!

    Mark S.

  • I hear they have one of these for people who want to be surgeons already set up in Slovakia [imdb.com].
  • by mh101 (620659)
    Ninja! [realultimatepower.net]


  • by deque_alpha (257777) <qhartman&gmail,com> on Friday April 28, 2006 @11:28PM (#15225672) Journal
    Whoever is behind this is likely to make a killing at this. There are so many people who hate their jobs but are so afraid to just take the dive, they'd likely be willing to pay a _lot_ to do this. Personally, I don't think this is a particularly useful metric of what another job would be like. As "the tech guy" in an educational institution, I've had numerous students job shadow me, and rarely do I have "typical" days when they are there. Invariably it gets scheduled for days when interesting, but low-impact projects are happening, or when something comes up, "I have a job shadow today, I probably should wait on that until tomorrow" gets said since a lot of my work requires relative quiet and concentration. Who knows though, maybe three days back to back will show a more relevant sample.
    • This guy will be a bilionaire...... This will be the next reality TV. People will pay for expierence ( they get to be on TV ), the employer will pay ( great advertisment ) You'll watch to see what a different job would be like, and the producers of the show will make a killing on the adds... This guy probably has a patent on the idea. ( if not..........it's MY IDEA!!....and here it is in print!!!! 4/49/2006.!!) This is gonna take off........invest in him./
  • Some professions even have programs set up to allow for this and I can only imagine that for the more esoteric ones you could simply ask someone in such a business to shadow him/her for a day. Offer to take the person out to a nice restaurant in return and you can just hang around their store/workplace with them telling you what they do.
    I'm sure a lot of people would just love the attention!
  • That reminds me of a chinese movie a few years ago, titled something like "dream fulfiller" or some sort like that. It's about a tiny company that promises to make your wildest dream come true. Then, a filthy rich businessman heard about that, as he constantly told people that he would like to live the simple life of a poor peasant, just simple life, no cell phone, no meeting, no meat, no shit, just simple meal. He paid big bucks for that privilege, the company drove him to a very far, remote village which
  • "Hi, I'm your intern this week."
  • You cannot immerse someone in a craft for a few days and expect him to get a positive experience. Crafts take a long time to master, and working at the master level can be confusing and difficult.

    This, however, is not a problem. It is infeasible to simply drop out of your stable job and jump to a completely unrelated field anyway. This, however, works well with learning a craft. It is easy to devote a few hours every weekend to developing a craft skill (e.g. home brewing beer starting with extract, moving

  • by BrikFace (209024) on Saturday April 29, 2006 @02:10AM (#15226447)
    Three years ago a plain old vacation showed me my true vocation-- vacation. Not kidding at all. Work is absolutely for suckers. Yes, I continue to be a sucker, as I gotta eat. But all my efforts, the majority of my thoughts (at their roots), are directed to this one grand hope: to get started on my true vocation. I was born 70 years too early. Robotics, man. I want robot cashiers, surgeons, auto mechanics, chefs, soldiers, aircraft mechanics, software programmers, CEOs. I want robot everything except maybe poets (and perhaps other writers like novelists, screenwriters, etc.,.), musicians/composers, scientists, philosophers, clergy, actors, President/Congress/Supreme Court (all other courts would have robot judges applying precedent; state governors and legislatures: robot), painters & other pictorial artists, fine artisans, software designers and barbers. All others: robot... Day in/Day out, Week in/Week out, Month in....Decade in/Decade out, work to that degree of endless repetition is nothing short of a nightmare, a poison. And yet here we all are doing it. The human creature was not made for this. We were made for the occasional hunt, some fruit picking, some tuber digging, some fishing and a little shelter fabrication & repair. That's it. The rest of the time is supposed to be just hangin out with friends and family, singing, telling stories and jokes, trying out random ideas, traveling, staring into the sky, etc.,. Man, we have to get back to what we were built for. We're hunter/gatherers, not farmers. That's right when all this evil strated. All this heart disease & cancer & what not-- it's work I'm tellin ya... We should pour about 80% of tax revenues into robotics development at universities and corporations, then kick off those workboots or wingtips and LIVE! To hell with the "work ethic" and Joe Blow in Brooklyn who never missed a day of work in 38 years. What bullshyte! To hell with it because it's of hell! This is the obvious secret. The elixir. We just have to wake up to it. Really. Hey, Pradeesh Bangalore-- you want my job? Take it. You're getting the worst of the bargain. Me, I'm going for La Dolce Vita on a Rip Van Winkle level, and my happiness will be beyond description. --bf
    • and the sequel..

      I'd (well, I'd most rather be a super sleepless but) I'd rather be a donkey than a liver...

      You remind me a lady I know, who would like to sleep for the next 30 years...
    • The human creature was not made for this. We were made for the occasional hunt, some fruit picking, some tuber digging, some fishing and a little shelter fabrication & repair. That's it. The rest of the time is supposed to be just hangin out with friends and family, singing, telling stories and jokes, trying out random ideas, traveling, staring into the sky, etc.,. Man, we have to get back to what we were built for.

      Utter nonsense. If you think pre-civilisation man had an easy time of it just chilling ou
    • Actually, humanity was not designed to be idle, as you believe. If it were the case then idle people would have perfect health instead of getting all sorts of obesity related illnesses and the idle rich wouldn't be killing themselves with drugs instead of enjoying their life the way the active rich (who have jobs they created) seem to do.

      You want want robot cashiers, surgeons, auto mechanics, chefs, soldiers, aircraft mechanics, software programmers, CEOs, but you're forgetting that there are enthusists in
  • Parenting. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SeaFox (739806) on Saturday April 29, 2006 @03:40AM (#15226676)
    Here would be a worthwhile oppurtunity.

    Test drive the life of a new parent. Figure out if you really want to invest 18 years of time doing it before you get (yourself/your spouse) knocked up.
  • I've just scanned the posts for this and I haven't seen a single one which says "What an incredibly simple and useful idea". We have the (very) tired and predictable jokes about pron and the equally predictable comments on the lines of "This won't work".

    OK. It may have flaws, but isn't the concept interesting in itself?

    Sheesh! Sometimes I worry about the /. community (yeah! That includes me)
  • I'd like to spend three days with some really rich bastards, learning how they became rich bastards. I figure the first day will be introductions, the second day secrets of becoming rich, and the third day on bastardry.
  • I've often dreamed of dropping the code monkey job before it drops me, and becoming a bush pilot. I know that being a bush pilot is a lot of hard work, a lot of flying in conditions you don't really want to fly in, and crappy wages, but I'd still like to try it out to see if I could take it or not.
    • Actually, bush pilots (if you truely mean the alaskan bush pilot and not some sexual referance) make alot of money doing what they do.
  • If you're paying someone to show you a good time at a job, I dont care what job it is, it will be a fun job. Its not going to be realistic unless they're paying you to do it. That's the only way you'd see the reality of the job... when you pay them, it's in their interest to make it really "cool". I doubt people would be so interested in how cool it is for you when they're paying you to make swords... in that case, you'd better make the sword the way they want or you're fired, they dont give a crap if yo
  • In the exciting field of FAST FOOD service! Experince the fast paced world of overlapping priorities tight schedules and teamwork, plus hang out with cute teen co-workers!

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  • Oh man.. I've been actively saying this exact same thing for many years, telling everyone I know (since I had no ability/desire to create such a company).

    My examples always included trying a day as a garbageman (which no one would leave an engineering job to do, but would be an interesting experience, riding the truck, etc), taxi driver, crane operator, etc.

    Wow! So cool that the idea actually flew!!

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