Bratty Redhead

the sarcasm is free!

Annoying Recruiter Call #45


I enjoy independent consulting.  For that matter, I enjoyed consulting for a consulting company.  I’ve been doing it in one form or another since 2006.  I love the variety and the challenge that comes from never knowing wtf will be thrown at me on any given day or project.  Some days it’s terrifying and some days I want to slap people around, but I won’t deny that I like it.

Currently my LinkedIn profile, a business card and a terse web site are all I use for self-promotion. I never lack for work. I get calls every week from larger businesses looking to recruit for FTEs.  This is rarely something I’m interested in.  I dislike the inevitable silo and I’m not able to engage in the cognitive dissonance required to believe in all the meaningless BS that is part of corporate baggage.  So I politely tell all these recruiters that, while I appreciate the contact, I’m not looking for full time work at this time.

Once in a while I get contacted by recruiters looking to hire for smaller startups.  I always listen to the pitch for these because, if the right small company comes along, I’d probably go work for them. 

Sometimes they’re way off the mark with my skillset or with people who want a culture match - like the recruiter looking to hire someone to work at a social network sports startup.  When I told her that, unless it was bicycle racing, I wasn’t interested, I could hear the awkward just floating through the phone.  Obviously these guys trying to use ESPN APIs and social networking to bring people together would have nothing to say to me.

I had a call in December from a recruiter from a brand new startup local to the area, using a tech stack of which I approved.  They tried to set me up but it never worked out.  The place was all chaos and key people kept going on vacation and one thing after another.  Eventually I forgot about it.  Until I got a call the other day from the same recruiting company.  They left me a voice mail, telling me they had a question and would I call.  So I did.  I called them today.

I got on the phone with the recruiter, a new one, and he literally stumbled all over himself for over a minute, trying to spit out a complete sentence.  He finally did and I nearly hung up on him.  The conversation went something like this:

Him: “ah, um…so…you know that company we were trying to…remember you worked with my boss last year and that company….they um, were looking for…remember we tried to set you up with X company?”
Me: Yes
Him: Would you happen to….they’re looking for…it’s really hard to find people who are into startup culture….um….ah…they’re looking for….um…developers….and so um…I was wondering….if, um
Me: I don’t know any developers looking for work
Him: Oh, um…right, well, if you happen to think of anyone…could I um…send you a followup email…just in um case?
Me: sure <click>

Then I sent an email to his manager, the very nice, polite and professional person I’d been talking to in December:

“Hi Harry, I would appreciate it if you could let your colleagues know not to call me for the sole purpose of asking if I know anyone looking for work.  It would probably also help their delivery if they not preface their requests with “remember the job last year we were trying to get for you but couldn’t?” and follow up with “do you know anyone else who might like to work there?”