Thinking out of the box to get a job at IDEO!

As a kid I loved cut desks, screws, tape—basically creating something real. That
was the reason why I chose mechanical engineering in high school. There, I learned how to mill, use CAD, program CNC machines, and maybe something more. I in school competitions, and I got life experience. I worked on the project for one year, and in the end we had built the 4th fastest car in the world. During my first 3 years at technical university, I became more focused on organizing events, traveling, and attending Start-up events. From these activities I developed my hands-on Design thinking. I realized that Design thinking is everywhere. Also, when I make hardware products, I look deeply at IDEO’s website, and over time, I have fallen in love with their work. It is the company that puts the customer first.

After reading a couple of books from IDEO, I realized that even though I want to be self-employed, I can also try to work for a company with good culture. I can use my skills with 3D modeling, CNC milling, or 3D printing, while at the same time providing a view on things from the perspective of a guy who grew up in Eastern Europe but has studied and lived in Western cultures. After my exploration period, I decided that I wanted to focus on reinforced carbon fibers and make my own products.

Because IDEO is very popular and they receive many applications for jobs, I decided that it was necessary to use out-of-the-box thinking and show HR managers how good I am. Rather than use a traditional application form, send a CV, and sit around waiting, I got creative ideas about how to get my dream internship. I made an 80*80 cm logo from PVC, cut by a NC laser, from back side of logo is website where they can find why I can be good part of the IDEO team.

I sent the logo directly to the CEO. It took 30 days for him to receive the pack, open it, and maybe also visit my website because the day he received the package I got 4 visitors from California on my LinkedIn profile. But LinkedIn showed only one visit from IDEO. Because I did not get any responses from IDEO after two weeks, I started a second round. To reach their HR department, I shared mywebsite on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. 214 visitors came to my website, and within one week, I also had many visits on LinkedIn, but no results.

1380 visitors visited my microsite in 2 months, 1100 people clicked on the link to my LinkedIn profile (noteworthy that LinkedIn only showed me 108 profile visitors), and they spent an average of 1:54, meaning that they played the video and clicked on my LinkedIn profile link.

Summary of my application process: creative things are good. They can make candidates special, and that is all. Maybe it is destiny, and I will go directly to working on my own project with reinforced carbon fibers or validation on a business plan for a diapers service in the Czech Republic.

If you have more creative ideas how to reach IDEO, leave your comment and if you like this article please share it with others.

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