News & Events


“Go for it.” LinkedIn’s Jake Hirsch-Allen offers advice for youth at the Silver Linings webinar

June 11, 2020

Opportunity For All Youth and the Canadian Council for Youth Prosperity recently teamed up with LinkedIn for the final event in the #ImpactCOVID webinar series, and over 600 viewers tuned into the conversation. Chris Duff from the CCYP was the moderator for the event.

Jake Hirsch-Allen, the North American Workforce Development and Higher Ed System Lead for LinkedIn, kicked off the conversation by sharing his personal story, starting with his childhood as the son of a diplomat, followed by his studies at the University of Toronto where he carved out his own major, to law school, to a tech start-up entrepreneur, and finally at LinkedIn.

Here is a summary the lessons he learned throughout his journey:

  • GO FOR IT – everyone has the impostor complex, nobody thinks they’re ready for that next job, and yet you will often do better with that little bit of self-doubt and then pushing through it.
  • Resilience, adaptability and curiosity are soft skills that will play a critical role in your success.
  • Explore anything that piques your interest and keep all doors open until you’re 100 per cent certain of what you want to do.
  • Use the German idea of human dignity to evaluate and guide what you want to do in life – ask yourself “whose human dignity is at stake?” and “how will your actions affect those around you?”
  • The better you understand “the macro”, how your actions play into the “big picture”, the more effective you’ll be in your job, “the micro”.

He also offered some practical advice:

  • Coffee chats are amazing for networking. How to approach? Say you’re interested in what they’re doing and would like to learn more. Asking for a job makes chats awkward.
  • Also ask for others who may be interested in meeting for a coffee chat. [Editors note: during this period of social distancing, virtual coffee chats are ideal.]
  • Take advantage of LinkedIn! One way to make networking on the platform more effective is to customize your connection requests. Let them know how you know them, or why you would like to connect.

Hirsch-Allen encouraged viewers to put his tip into practice by connecting with him on LinkedIn and sending him a message of introduction.

The Silver Linings webinar was held on June 1st. Have any questions, comments or have an idea for a future webinar? Contact us here.

To hear the full conversation, along with Hirsch-Allen’s compelling monologue, watch the full video here:


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