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How to Build a Career in the Psychedelics Industry Ft. Nick Martin

Unlock the secrets to a thriving career in psychedelics! Join host Nicholas Levich as he delves deep into the world of psychedelic careers with special guest Nick Martin. In this eye-opening episode, they reveal the crucial steps to break into the industry, from crafting the right mindset to identifying your ideal role. 

Discover how your current job can be your ticket to a fulfilling career in psychedelics and gain valuable insights into company culture and fit. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, this episode will leave you inspired and equipped to navigate the exciting, ever-evolving landscape of psychedelics. 

From polishing your digital presence to tailoring your application to stand out from the crowd, they provide valuable insights and practical advice that will help you kickstart your career in psychedelics. Discover the importance of aligning your personal values with the companies you want to work for and how to avoid common pitfalls along the way. 

If you’ve ever dreamed of making a meaningful impact in the psychedelic space, this episode is your guide to turning that dream into reality. Don’t miss out on this essential career advice.

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    Episode 60 – How to Build a Career in the Psychedelics Industry Ft. Nick Martin

    Nicholas Levich:

    Welcome to the Psychedelic Passage podcast. My name is Nick Levich. I am so grateful to be with you all today. 

    This week we are talking about how to get a job or perhaps more importantly, how to establish a career in psychedelics. And this episode is specifically discussing a career alternative to an actual guide or facilitator.

    And so we’ve already recorded episode 54 that talks specifically about how to become a guide or facilitator. And this is for folks who want to get involved in the psychedelic landscape, but not in that capacity. 

    They’re looking for a different way to get involved. And with me today, I have a very special guest by the name of Nick Martin. He is one of our client concierges. 

    And for those of you who don’t know, they’re basically the first touch point for when folks schedule a consultation with psychedelic passage before getting connected to a facilitator. 

    He’s been with us for the last five months. And just for a little bit of demographic info, he’s in his late 20s, male identifying, studied art history and psychology in undergrad, as well as counseling psychology in graduate school. 

    He’s worked in the psychedelic industry, landscape space, whatever term we’re gonna use here for the last three and a half years. 

    And he’s worked for companies like Mind Leap, Mind Bloom, Journey Clinical, as well as Psychedelic Passage. And he’s even worked as a recruit in the psychedelic landscape. 

    And so he’s incredibly knowledgeable on how to go about getting a job in the space. And we’re super grateful to have you. So thanks for joining, Nick.

    Nick Martin:

    Absolutely, Nick. Thanks for the introduction there. Always interesting to hear your sort of resume read back to you. So thanks for that.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, and it just occurred to me that we’re a Nick and Nick today. So hopefully you guys can discern the difference based on our voice and I’m excited to get into it. 

    I think I’d like to start with just, how did you personally break into this space going from, you know, college straight into psychedelics?

    Where Does Nick Martin’s Journey Begin?

    [00:02:08] Nick Martin:

    Yeah, thanks for that Nick. My story, yeah, I usually start in graduate school. So I had done undergrad like in psychology, like you mentioned, and I thought I wanted to move into the therapy world. 

    Went into a master’s program in counseling psychology, and two important things happened for me during that time. Number one is I had my first experience with psychedelics and that sort of catalyzed my own personal and professional transformation. 

    And that might be similar to what some listeners maybe are thinking about if they’re curious about getting into this space. You go in through your own personal journey and then it might influence what you want to do in the professional space. 

    So I heard some researchers speaking as well at an APA convention. Roland Griffiths, Matthew Johnson, Michael Pollan. And so to be, you know, experiencing personal validation from their studies and stuff was just amazing and I thought, this is what I wanna work in.

    I wanna work in this space and I wanna get involved. Uh, so that was sort of like the original impetus. This was back in 2019 transitioning into 2020. Back then there weren’t that many companies, like not as much as there is today. Certainly.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yep.

    Nick Martin:

    And then a lot of biotechs too, if they were around at that time. And, um, yeah, just like, I think that’s where venture capital was sort of putting their money at the time. So you asked like, how did I get into this space? 

    I reached out to a bunch of companies, mostly just cold outreach because they didn’t have job boards. There weren’t a ton of job postings. There were some, but not many. And got picked up by one of the companies you mentioned, MindLeap.

    My job was to recruit coaches, integration coaches. And I had previously done some recruiting work in graduate school. So yeah, we had a couple of early conversations. It was a super small team, but again, the landscape has shifted a little bit now. But that’s how I got started.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah and I think it’s interesting that, you know, your first go at it was from cold outreach. And at the time there was very little going on. I mean, even on LinkedIn, it was very quiet in 2019. And so, you know, one of the things that I’m hearing to start with is just like be proactive.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, 100%. I think that’s a huge portion of this because it’s not like other industries. And I think we’re going to get into that a little bit, but it’s different. It’s new. 

    It’s figuring itself out all the time. I appreciated y’all’s episode on the MAPS conference because it’s just like, that looks completely different than what it used to. 

    Nicholas Levich:

    Totally.

    Nick Martin:

    And yeah, there’s just a lot of changes going on.

    How to Start Searching for Your Place in the Psychedelic Landscape

    [00:04:35] Nicholas Levich:

    All right, so here’s a question in everyone’s mind. How do I get a job in this space? Like practically speaking, what are people supposed to do here?

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, no, that’s a great, great question. I normally start with this idea of treating your job search like a ceremony. And I think that applies to a lot of things in life, but here’s what I’m talking about. 

    You might feel this call, much like you might feel a call to journey with a plant medicine in a ceremonial setting. You might feel a call to work in a space like this, and I think it’s important to start with an element of preparation

    Reflecting on what your intentions are here. What does a psychedelic job look like to you, AKA what are your expectations heading into that? 

    And if you can, try to channel a lot of that energy coming up for you into the excitement and the draw, the vocational pull, whatever you want to call it or however it sounds to you, channel that into some really mindful, intentional reflection. 

    That’s going to lead you further than trying to just look up what salaries are and just put in the cart before the horse, if you will. I think an adequate level of preparation is important here. 

    Then it comes time for the actual ceremony, the actual process. This could be a couple different things. The analogy doesn’t lay out perfectly, but it could be your job search. 

    It could be your first interview. It could be a conversation with somebody, a recruiter, or just somebody at another company, whatever that is. And here, just again, see what’s coming up for you. 

    Try to let go of things that could be proverbially like baggage for you and just observe what it’s like for you to go through that process. And then on the back end, after you’ve gone through X, Y, or Z again, whatever that looks like–

    Whether you applied to a job and didn’t hear back, you applied to a job and went through an interview and didn’t get an offer, or you applied to a job interview and then get an offer, the different iterations there, see what comes up for you. 

    Really, again, like hopefully you’ve done sort of that intentional reflection and it’s gonna feel aligned if and when something presents itself. Otherwise, you can make some space for yourself to deliberate and decide what your next steps might look like. 

    So that’s sort of the starting spot, I think, for folks that is not very actionable, but I’m down to get into some action steps next.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, thanks for that. And I think, I mean, what you’re talking to is mindset. Like, like it, there’s a certain mindset required to go get a job. 

    And the thing is, at least from my perspective, like, even though we’re talking about jobs in the psychedelic space, a lot of the best practices for getting a job still hold true. 

    Like have a polished resume, what’s your vocation, where’s your skill set, where can you actually plug in and add value to a company? And so just because it’s psychedelics doesn’t mean that all that goes out the window.

    Nick Martin:

    100%. Yeah, there’s a lot of similarities here. And there are, you know, there are some differences we could talk about too, but you still are putting forth that professional aspect of yourself and like you’re going to be showing up in a professional manner. 

    And this also, we could talk about how this can sometimes be a pitfall for folks, just briefly touch on it. If you are a marketer and you want to do marketing and psychedelics, It’s important to note that 95% of your job is going to stay the exact same. 

    As in like, you’re still going to be working in marketing tools and using marketing assets and building out the marketing campaigns. So just be aware of that. I think that sometimes can be lost in the vocational shift people see.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, so what I’m hearing you say is like, even though the mission is oriented towards psychedelics, the day to day is still going to be accounting or marketing or finance or recruiting or like whatever it is, you’re just applying it to a different industry.

    Nick Martin:

    100%. And I think that is an element of the preparation process can be, or I should say, reflection on your current job is an important part of the preparation process. 

    Because normally what I hear from folks who are seeking a job in the psychedelic space is that they have that personal experience we talked about, usually, some sort of altered state, profound transformation, et cetera. 

    Then it’s a vocational drive. As in, I want to help share this power of psychedelics because I believe in it. I believe it can heal the country or communities, shift the mental health paradigm, whatever that looks like. And then there’s this element to tie it back, which is your actual job. 

    And so some folks might be sitting here like, I don’t like my current job. I want a new job, this is the perfect space to do it. And that could be totally fine. 

    But if you’re dissatisfied with your job function, then you’re going to go a different route than somebody who really likes their job function, be it accounting or marketing, and just wants to network in psychedelics.

    Nicholas Levich:

    So one of the other things that I’m hearing you say is that there’s, there’s layers to this whole thing. So we’ve talked about the mission, which we’re applying to psychedelics, but there’s also the day-to-day experience of what you’re doing in your role and whether you like that or not. 

    And then there’s also this piece that’s layered in there, which is your fit, your company culture, and potentially who you’re directly reporting to.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, 100% all those elements still apply. Even if you’re working with a mission that you feel is near and dear to you. And you can wake up in the morning or, you know, go to bed at night, feeling good about what you do, you’re still working in community with other people. 

    And so yeah, who’s your team? Who are your managers? What are the company priorities? And then also just the job function. I mean, I’m sure a lot of folks have experienced you know, job A, which had really great reporting and management and things felt good. 

    And then job B, let’s say where things are a little disorganized and, you know, some people can work fine in that latter environment, but paying attention to those factors as you go through an interview process are really, really important. 

    We can go into this a little, but I feel like sometimes we have rose-colored glasses when it comes to assessing jobs and companies and opportunities in spaces we’re really excited about psychedelics being one of them.

    Addressing the “Rose-Colored Glasses” Effect

    [00:11:17] Nicholas Levich:

    I think we should touch on that for a moment, because I see this a lot on my end as well. It’s like, well, if I just get a job in psychedelics, all the issues that I have with work will go away.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah.

    Nicholas Levich:

    I don’t know if it works like that.

    Nick Martin:

    It’s not the magic pill right? There’s other factors here. There’s other considerations. What’s coming up for me around rose-colored glasses is sometimes this can face outward or external and we might look at a job or a company–

    –and just be so excited about the prospect of psychedelics and what they’re doing in the psychedelic space, we might not totally do our due diligence when it comes to assessing that job or that company. 

    And so similar to the solution I gave at the start of this, which is to treat it like a ceremony. This preparation can help you through the discovery process–

    –help you to stay really mindful of what’s important to you, what you envision as the space, and just asking questions as you go through that, I think can be really helpful.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, and then you said there were kind of two things. And so we started with the externally-oriented piece and I’m curious kind of what the other one that you had in your mind is.

    Nick Martin:

    Sure thing. Yeah, this is still rose-colored glasses, if you will. This can be a little tricky, but it’s essentially looking inward here. As in, passion for promoting psychedelics is really great, and I think it’s a fantastic thing to carry into your job search. I think it’s important. 

    But we also might do ourselves a favor by staying mindful of what our professional skills are and what experience we have because it is a competitive industry for the most part. There are a limited number of companies out there. 

    There’s limited amounts of funding and there are limited amounts of positions. And most of these groups are startup groups–

    –Meaning they don’t normally have the tools to train people at an entry level into becoming somebody who can really own a lot of the operation that you’d be contributing to. 

    So what I talk about with folks is I think it’s important to recognize that both skills and passion are important, but you really do need both most of the time. 

    Maybe there’s some way you can find something, but if you are reflecting on your own skills and you think that there might be some areas for improvement, number one, I say still apply. 

    That’s not what I’m saying is don’t do it because you never know. But number two is your process might be less around applying to three dozen jobs and it might be more around getting training in–

    Nicholas Levich:

    Mmm.

    Nick Martin:

    –the role that you want to do. That could be a more effective route for a lot of folks.

    Nicholas Levich:

    And I’ll speak from my perspective as someone who’s done a lot of hiring in the space. Passion does not get you a job. Like it, it is one prerequisite, but so is having the skillset required to complete the job function. 

    Like that’s why we write out role descriptions and if you can’t fulfill the role description, your passion doesn’t really matter. And so I think you’ve hit the nail on the head, which is like, you got to have both.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, absolutely. And like, again, passion is really great. And I, again, in the context of a ceremony, like, for some folks, it might be more effective to, through the preparation process–

    –Discover that their passion and their energy and excitement that they have would be more advantageous to channel into getting training or working in another space. 

    And when it comes to psychedelics, there are options here, as in psychedelics are super small, but they are growing. Like I alluded to back when I started my job search 2019, it was smaller. I don’t know by what percent or how many companies, but I know it was smaller. It’s bigger now.

    It’s probably going to get bigger. But are there other spaces that are similar to the types of companies that you might be seeking to work at? Namely, like, are there other mental health companies that you could–

    Nicholas Levich:

    Right.

    Nick Martin:

    –get experience with? That could be transferable. Same thing with healthcare more broadly. So if you start to like open up that scope, you might find yourself moving down a path towards working in psychedelics, even if it seems a little crooked to start. 

    Another element of this is startups. Like I said, most of these teams are startups, and they don’t have the bandwidth to support an entry level person. 

    They need folks who have really strong skills in X, Y, or Z area, and they have the autonomy to run that part of the company, or the organization, or that team. 

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yep. 

    Nick Martin:

    And so if that’s what you’re after, gaining some beginner level experience, and then perhaps working in another startup, is a good way to show that you have the chops to work at a psychedelic startup.

    Nicholas Levich:

    I think that’s excellent advice. And, you know, we didn’t get into this because I started asking such a broad question as far as how does one actually get a job. But I think, you know, one thing that you put a pin in was this idea of like actual action items.

    Nick Martin:

    Mm.

    Actionable Advice & Resources

    [00:16:46] Nicholas Levich:

    And so I’m curious what some of those action items are now, given that we’re four years later than when you started. And there are a lot more resources out there for becoming aware of jobs, roles, and opportunities in this space.

    Nick Martin:

    Mm-hmm. Yeah. Let’s start with, if it’s alright with you, finding what’s out there. Because this can help in people’s, like, discovery process. 

    I think there are more action steps we can talk to later when it comes to, like, applying and networking, that type of stuff. But for now, let’s say you’re just trying to identify what’s possible. 

    One spot that I tell people to start at is an organization called Psychedelic Alpha. It’s a website, and they do a really great job of giving an overview of the psychedelic industry, opportunities, et cetera. Number one, they just have a job listing. They have a–

    Nicholas Levich:

    Job board.

    Nick Martin:

    –job board. Yeah exactly. Which is great because even in 2020, I remember recruiting for a company and using that. And in 2021, using it. In 2022, right? So it’s been in use for a long time and a lot of groups are aware of it. So if you’re not familiar, check out Psychedelic Alpha. 

    They have a whole bunch of great resources on. their platform, that’s one of them that I point people towards. You might want to check that. Another one would be, I’m trying to give more helpful stuff than LinkedIn, which I’ll talk about later, but another one would be conferences. 

    There are lots of conferences that take place in different parts of the US and around the world. And even if you can’t attend a conference, because that can take a lot of resources. It’s a huge investment a lot of the time. 

    Even if you can’t attend it, can you take a look at the “lineup”? As in like, can you see the organizations that are coming in? It’s like going to a music festival and not being able to go–

    –But kind of living vicariously or something, seeing who, which day would I go to Friday, Saturday, Sunday? Take a look at the lineup and see if there are companies that maybe you’ve heard of–

    –Or maybe they’re new companies and do a little like, you know, searching on your own but that can be a great way to discover companies in the space because they’re probably serious in that they have some funding if they’re showing up at a conference. 

    Otherwise, they probably wouldn’t spend the money to go to it. I think that’s a great place for people to start looking.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yep. One thing that comes up for me that I just want to throw in here is like, there’s a lot of psychedelic communities and group threads and signal chats and things out there where people are sharing openings. 

    And I know that we’ve actually hired through folks that are like, hey, your job came through a group that I’m a part of and I knew I needed to apply kind of a thing. 

    And so get involved in some sort of a community group or a space of like-minded folks who do have a pulse on what’s going on.

    Nick Martin:

    That’s a really, really great point Nick. I think that’s important. I think finding community, virtual communities and local communities are two action steps I think people can take. Virtual, like you alluded to, just people are sharing resources regularly. 

    And in fact, I don’t even know if you know this, I learned about the psychedelic passage job through a LinkedIn connection I have, you know, and it’s like, that was just how it got transmitted to me and that can be great.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yep.

    Nick Martin:

    So I think there’s an element to that. And then, yeah, maybe we can go into local communities more so a little bit later on. I think if I can, just to round out what else people might do for finding opportunities, I think LinkedIn, like I just kind of mentioned, is great. 

    Try to connect with people on LinkedIn. If they don’t connect with you, you’ll at least be following them. And as a result, you might see stuff that they post. I’ve definitely seen postings about opportunities and asks and things that aren’t normally put out there. 

    LinkedIn and Indeed both are used in the psychedelic space, like recruiters will use them. I think there’s a lot of overlap there between what we mentioned with Psychedelic Alpha and then what they post.

    But people might want to check those out and just again regularly, maybe it’s once a week, maybe it’s once every two weeks, search on those platforms for psychedelic jobs, if you will. 

    Yeah, and then the last bit would be around outreach, as in like cold outreach, which I think there’s a way to do it and try to do it well. But again, like expectation wise, just note that this probably isn’t like a very effective way to go about things, but it can lead to stuff. 

    As in if you are reaching out to folks who don’t have job listings. There’s a chance that they don’t have the budget to recruit or they don’t even recognize they have needs that you might be able to fulfill. 

    There’s maybe even an opportunity where they, again, if they’re a small company, say, hey, we can’t bring you on with full-time benefits, equity, et cetera. 

    But, you know, we have a small project and just based on your background, it looks like you might fit, that stuff is possible again, just expectation setting here is important.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, I think I want to touch on this as someone who’s in the owner position here is like that stuff still goes a long way in a startup environment from my perspective. 

    And I think the way that I would think about this is like short-term versus long-term, if you need a job tomorrow, cold outreach probably isn’t the move. 

    But if you want to basically have a placeholder or peak the interest of someone who’s in a, in a state of scaling, growing, expanding, and they’re eventually going to need someone like you in the future–

    –It’s nice as an owner or a founder to have that person in your back pocket or to know, Hey, you know, we’ve got Bob over here for when we, when we finally need a sales guy or whatever the case is. 

    And so I still think there’s room for cold outreach in this space, but I think it’s gotta be tied to your intention and the reality of your situation.

    Nick Martin:

    Mm, I think that’s so important. And yeah, like you said, like you can, in some cases, plant a seed and you never know what it might lead to. 

    And for the job seeker, there’s the advantage of, yes, you potentially building that connection that leads to an opportunity. You’ll also just get an opportunity to learn from folks if and when they’re able to connect with you. 

    You know, 20 minutes over a Zoom call, 30 minutes, you might learn a great deal about what that company’s up to or what that person’s job is like. 

    And I’ve talked with folks who have had those networking conversations and they’ve left it thinking, wow, I don’t actually think I would like doing what they do. 

    And that’s great because learning that then is way, in my opinion, way better than going through an application process and maybe even accepting an offer and then landing there realizing it wasn’t for you.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, I mean, part of this process is learning what you don’t want to do, just as much as learning what you do want to do.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, right? Like that’s just as just as valuable if not more so. So yeah, I think that’s great.

    Nicholas Levich:

    And so now that we’ve talked about how to actually find the job, the role, the opening, what’s next? How do we go about the actual application process?

    Creating a Professional Online Presence

    [00:23:43] Nick Martin:

    Yeah, I think that it’s really important to have your digital assets, resume, LinkedIn profile, cover letter. You should have those in tip top shape. 

    And I’m not saying you need to hire somebody to do a whole bunch of stuff on it, or you need to spend more than a few days and a couple hours each day getting them ready. 

    But if you don’t have an updated resume or if your LinkedIn profile looks really, really bare, it’s going to separate you from dozens, maybe a hundred plus more candidates who do have those things in good shape. So that’s just best practice. 

    If you have a little bit of bandwidth to get those things in good shape, I think it’s worth doing so. And digital presence is important. I’m not somebody who really takes too much to social media. 

    LinkedIn is my only social network, but you know, I still had to learn it and I had to like get a good profile photo up and make sure that it was updated. And I think that’s helped. 

    Because when you do X, Y, or Z, apply to a job, cold outreach, whatever that is, you’re going to look good digitally speaking and that’s important. 

    So I’d say take some time to make sure, again, LinkedIn resume, cover letter, portfolio, if you need one for the job, like whatever those things are, just make sure they’re in great shape, other people, other applicants are going to be doing that. 

    Another thing you might consider, and this is sort of psychedelic specific, is just trying to tailor a little bit of your own story into an application without overdoing it, but just like letting them know that you do have that passion. 

    That’s sort of the passion measure, I think, that job providers, employers might check is like, oh, did they mention something in a cover letter? 

    So if you can sort of tie in maybe your own personal story or something important to you that resonates with the organization’s mission, I wouldn’t make it half your cover letter, but you can make it a couple of lines and that can be great. 

    I think like two pitfalls that I want to address with this application stuff is number one, stay authentic. Don’t say you have skills doing something you don’t have skills doing. It’s going to come out eventually and best practices to not do that. 

    The other thing would be to Take it easy on yourself and budget your time for something like this if you can time block it. And again, just devote a couple hours in the evening of a week. Just go for that and try not to overdo it.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, I also have two things that I’d like to throw in here. One is get on the ball and apply quickly because one of the things that I’ve seen is there’s a short window in which your application has the potential to be reviewed. 

    And then once there’s like 300 applications in there, eventually the hiring manager just doesn’t go through the rest of them. And like candidly, we’ve seen that in our own process. It is overwhelming sometimes–

    Nick Martin:

    Hmm.

    Nicholas Levich:

    –with the number of applicants there are. And I actually had an applicant tell me once that they set up notifications on LinkedIn to be alerted when we posted a job so that they could like immediately apply–

    –because they had already, to your point, followed your steps of like identifying the company they wanted to be a part of, flagging them, putting in the notification for when the job became available. 

    And then the second they got that ping, they sent over their information. And I think that’s a really good way to do it is to identify the company and then just get notified the second they post something.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah. Wow. That’s really great. Yeah. LinkedIn has that new feature, right? Where you can follow the company and turn on a notification for when they post. That’s awesome. And yeah, like I’m sure this person had their digital assets in good shape.

    Nicholas Levich:

    For sure.

    Nick Martin:

    So they do that work on the front end, then it becomes a lot easier when things come along rather than, you know, like you said, learning about a job, then trying to tailor everything or get stuff into shape. 

    And then, you never know, they might be kind of closing the window after not that much time. So being quick is important.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Totally. I have one other note on the cover letter, which is like, I love sharing, I love hearing and reading people’s personal stories. And at the end of the day, I’m trying to figure out if I should hire you or not. 

    So the thing for me is like, what’s the value you’re gonna bring? Like the transformation that you’ve experienced is awesome. And that’s largely the reason I think most of us wanna work in this space, but then like, what are you actually gonna do for the company? 

    Like what value can you bring? And that to me is this whole other piece of like, this is still a job, it’s still a role. And the employer is trying to find this person that’s best suited to fill that.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, that’s huge. I think like, if you’re going to include the personal narrative, which again, I think like has, it can, it can be a piece of the pie–

    Nicholas Levich:

    For sure.

    Nick Martin:

    –you know, just phrase it in a way that it’s going to lead into what you’re actually going to bring to the table. I think that’s huge. Yeah.

    Nicholas Levich:

    And you touched on kind of potential pitfalls, but I’m curious if there’s anything else that you think is important to kind of warn against as folks are going through this process.

    Nick Martin:

    I think the last pitfall I’d like to touch upon would be values exploration for folks looking to enter the psychedelic space. People have different ideas of how they want psychedelics to come forward. 

    Some folks are more medically inclined. They’d like to come through like the clinical routes. Other folks want it a little bit more democratized, easier access, those types of things. 

    And I think it’s important to reflect on your own values, what you see as important for the space and consider whether or not the company you’re looking to work at aligns with that perspective, that sort of mission that you might have. 

    And so I give this example of someone who supports the legalization and regulation of all drugs. They might not feel mission aligned with a clinical oriented medicine prescribing company, right?

    And vice versa, you know, somebody who does believe that it’s important to have, you know, medical prescriptions for these plant medicines. If that’s like the integral component of this healing work, then, you know, groups that are outside of that scope, it might not feel right. 

    And so you might want to consider having your, you know, sort of radar on as you’re going through and assessing whether or not that specific company mission aligns with your own personal interests and ideal outcome for the psychedelic space.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, I mean, this plays into kind of what you were talking about with the music lineup, so to speak, and like choosing a company that meets your needs or is aligned with what it is that you’re seeking. 

    And I think this actually is really important in this space because a lot of the publicly funded and or VC backed companies in the space, they’re operating much more like a small pharma company–

    –where there’s patenting and gatekeeping and very like research clinically oriented stuff. And that’s going to appeal to a very certain type of job seeker. 

    And then there’s other folks that are, you know, maybe working on policy, or maybe they’re really focused on like at home private use, that’s going to be a totally different type of company ethos and mission than small pharma. 

    And so, you know, that level of discernment, I think is really important when choosing a company and likely the company culture will be an extension of that because that’s the other thing that I see a lot–

     –there’s folks who think, well, oh, well, if I get into psychedelics, it’s going to be peace, love, and, and happiness in the company culture. And it’s like, maybe a little bit of that, but at the end of the day, like, this is still a business, they still have to function.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, it’s so real, you know, and like we’re all human, right? Like there’s going to be, there are going to be pros and cons to everything we pursue and do, but that’s really, really important. 

    I think that company culture piece, if I can share a little bit more, I think like still do the same checks you would do for any other company, right? It’s like the same job application process. 

    Do your same due diligence when you’re assessing a company as in like ask questions about the company culture. How does your manager manage? Can you talk to one of their reportees, somebody who reports to them?

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yep.

    Nick Martin:

    Can you get their perspective? Work-life balance, is that emphasized? Is there any emphasis on diversity, equity, inclusion? Yeah, do other people like working there?

    I mean I oftentimes tell folks to sign up for a LinkedIn premium trial, and as you’re looking through the list of companies out there, see what the median tenure is, because you’d see that if you have the paid for version, you could see how long people are staying at that company. 

    You could do similar stuff on Glassdoor. There are other ways to assess, and you should do that for, honestly, most companies you’re thinking about. It just helps you get a sense of something, whether or not people like working there, and it helps you envision whether or not you would too.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, I’m curious just as we continue in this conversation here, if there’s any other pieces of tangible or practical advice that you’d give to folks who are either actively in this process or about to embark on it.

    Nick Martin:

    Yeah, absolutely. I think one thing that we just briefly touched on, I’ll double down on, would be to expand your scope. Psychedelics is a tiny portion of what’s out there right now and it’s going to grow, I think. 

    But mental health is a broader area that you could potentially contribute to and it might feel also very mission aligned for some folks.

     And again, if you widen your job search to include groups that are doing stuff beyond just psychedelics, it’s going to maybe fulfill that sort of personal vocational drive and, or–

    –get you set up to have conversations with other folks in the psychedelic specific segment of that larger group. And then even a larger zoom out would be like healthcare more broadly. So again, same thing supply. 

    I think the other consideration would be like, do you want to work in a startup environment? If so, take a look at other startups. 

    Do you want to work in therapy? Is that like the thing that’s really driving you again, there’ll be likely mental health companies that are doing that work. 

    Similarly, if you like the idea of consumer goods, and you think small packages of microdoses are going to be the most, you know, if that seems like a space you want to work in, you can work in the functional mushroom space right now.

    You can work in these companies that are delivering sort of holistic wellness or alternative solutions to folks, it can be interesting. So I’d sort of give that. 

    Another consideration here would be to try to find the smallest of groups. And again, this, I think you brought up a really good point, which was like, if you need a job tomorrow, your process is going to look a little bit different. 

    But in this recommendation, this is maybe for somebody who already has a job or doesn’t need to find a job right away. You might consider finding smaller groups to get the conversations going. 

    Again, they’re less likely to have job postings on groups like Psychedelic Alpha. They’re less likely to post on LinkedIn, et cetera. Reach out to them, maybe try to beat them to the punch and, you know, let them know that you have their attention. 

    Would it be of interest to have that conversation going? And you would mention that as like, you know, a job hire, it can go a long way.

    Nicholas Levich:

    For sure.

    Nick Martin:

    Another thing here would be, and this sort of stems from that is like, these groups might not have the resources to bring you on in a full-time salary capacity, but you could potentially do contract work or part-time work. 

    And so again, like this takes a certain level of privilege and or like resource security, but if you’re able to take on those opportunities, sometimes that can be a great way to kind of get your foot in the door and start to work again in a part-time or a contract space. 

    So yeah, that’s an option. We briefly mentioned, and I draw it back to finding community, like you mentioned, there are signal chats out there. There are circle communities. Poke around a little bit, try to find a few that feel aligned for you. 

    The Importance of Local & In-Person Communities

    [00:36:07] Nick Martin: And I also give this prompt to folks to find a local community. A lot of emphasis has been on the digital space. And that’s well and good. I sort of have my own personal prediction that I think we’re going to see like a little bit more of a return to local things that are not online. 

    And I don’t know, like states and local jurisdictions are bringing forth decrim and legalization, like they’re the ones leading that space. And there maybe is a little bit of some awakening here, you know, that people are like, maybe I should spend less time at a computer. 

    So anyways, I think like being in commune with those that are around you, you are in the community already, that can help. 

    They have a few local psychedelic community groups on there. You might be able to find advocacy opportunities, harm reduction, whatever that is. 

    I think that’s a great way to sort of scratch the psychedelic itch, which I think a lot of people have, which is like, again, you might be working in a job outside of psychedelics, but you’ve had personal experience, now you want to somehow contribute to the movement. 

    Maybe joining a local community is going to fulfill that call that you have. And you don’t need to uproot your current career in order to try to find something else. Maybe a local community is a way to explore that. Yeah, that’s what I’d give people there. 

    And then the last thing would be that this is a new space. There are new companies that pop up every quarter. And they are growing. It’s a novel space. If you, as a job seeker, see something that’s missing, follow that. 

    Maybe you can have conversations with other folks who feel similarly, and you can start your own thing. If a whole bunch of factors play in and make sense for you to do so, I think that can be pretty cool too.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Yeah, thanks for that. I think that’s all really sound advice. And, you know, another resource that comes to mind for me is meetup.com for those that are looking for more local oriented. There’s psychedelic groups on there. There’s even just like mental health and mindfulness groups. 

    There’s all kinds of different communities meeting on there. And I think they attract a lot of the same types of folks. And, you know, as you were sharing, I kind of had this duh moment where it’s like, the old adage is it’s not what you know, but who you know. 

    And that really came through for me as you were sharing, which is like, part of this is knowing the right people, especially if like  you’re in Oregon and someone, you know, is setting up a psilocybin service center, they probably need an admin and they might need an RN. 

    And so there’s these other tangential roles that are very important in helping this whole industry grow. I mean, you know, one of the big problems that folks are facing right now is like, how do I find insurance? 

    And so there’s all these different things that, you know, traditional vocational tracks are going to start to be applied to the psychedelic space. And so I think we’re going to see a lot of emergence of new roles, new companies and new opportunities in the next several years here.

    Nick Martin:

    Mm-hmm. Yeah 100%. And I love the idea of like, you never know what these connections are going to lead to. 

    I think from an expectation standpoint, if you’re going to be networking virtual, you know, for a coffee chat or in-person with these local communities is like having set expectations around what’s possible and just stay open. 

    You never know what these things could lead to. And it might not lead to something in a month, but maybe in a year it does. Yeah, there are a lot of things that are possible for folks here, and we’re just young. There’s a lot of growing that’s going to take place, is my prediction.

    Nicholas Levich:

    For sure. Well, thank you for all that. That was super helpful and enlightening. And I’m curious if there’s anything else that you’d like to share or add before we wrap up today.

    Nick Martin:

    I would like to let folks know that if they’re curious to learn more, they can make contact with me. I do support some folks in finding and applying to jobs, etc. 

    So if you ever want to talk strategy, if you want to see some of the stuff I’ve put together, you can take a look at my website, which is nickmartinma.com

    Or you can just find me on LinkedIn Nick Martin plus psychedelic passage. I’ll probably show up but yeah down to have conversations with folks as they’re sort of navigating this space.

    Nicholas Levich:

    Cool, appreciate that. And we’ll also put the link to your website in the show description. So for those of you who are listening, you can click it in the show description below. 

    And once again, Nick, thank you so much for joining us today and sharing your wisdom, having navigated the space yourself for the last several years and done recruiting in the space. So thank you for that. 

    That brings us to the end of the Psychedelic Passage podcast for today. Thank you all so much for tuning in. We hope that you found this enlightening and helpful and actionable. Those are the steps that we always try to bring you each episode. 

    As you know by now, we really appreciate it if you could share, rate and review. It helps others find us and we look forward to being with you all next week. Thank you so much, bye.

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