I keep forgetting to remind all of you that I’m still looking for a job. Or more correctly, the right job. I’m actually pretty happy with the job search — I’ve been second candidate twice in the last month, which is frustrating in a way but also nice confirmation there’s interest. I’ve also pulled out of a couple of interviews when I decided it wasn’t what I was looking for, and of course had companies do the same on their end.
I did have a bit of a drought a couple of months ago where nothing seemed to be happening, which was bothering me, but then I got into deep discussions with a company, and suddenly I had three others in various stages of interviews as well, so I have to keep reminding myself that this stuff can run in cycles. I was kevtching near a friend a few weeks ago about this and he set me straight by telling me the reason I didn’t have a job was because I was being really fussy about it, and he’s dead right.
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Rudeness in the hiring cycle
Before I go, though, a quick lecture about things I’m seeing companies do that are making me grumpy….
One trend I see with companies is that they treat their candidates with no respect. Here’s a recent case: I spent some time talking with the recruiter while he set up an interview with the VP/CMO for the company. After having to reschedule me twice, she and I finally got on the phone and talked. At the end of the chat, she told me she was going to have in-person interviews set up to have me brought in to talk to the team.
It was a position I thought was pretty interesting, so this made my day. I also felt there were some things I could do to prepare for the interviews, so I started putting some time building out my ideas on the community they wanted and researching some of their technologies that were new to me.
And three days later, I had about six hours of work into this and realized they hadn’t contacted me. I gave it a week, and then wrote them off.
She lied to me to get me off the phone. Don’t ever do this. there’s no reason: you can be non-committal and let the recruiter close it down, although I’ve found it’s fairly common for them to just drop it with silence as well.
This isn’t a “I expect a personal response to my resume” thing; I’m well aware of the realities of the slush pile, and I don’t expect that. But once we get into a conversation, it’s incredibly rude to just go silent. A simple email is enough to say “Hey, we’ve decided not to move forward on this”.
But instead, it seems as soon as they decide you aren’t what they want, they just blow you off. This is, to me, rude and gives me an indication of how you treat people in your company. And then when someone at your company lies to me about the interview? Especially when it’s a CxO exec of the company? Really?
These things have side effects, folks. This specific company (and no, I’m not mentioning names) might well be a potential vendor for me for the kind of roles I’m interviewing for. So imagine the reaction of the sales rep when they and I sit down and I explain to them why I won’t consider buying from their company. That’ll be a fun chat.
Once you engage in conversation with someone, have the manners to at least end the conversation gracefully. Because what you’re really showing is that you’re rude and you don’t treat the people around you well. The best way to judge a person is to ignore how they treat you and watch how they treat the waiters and staff. That’s their real person coming through. And when you play the rude card on a job candidate you’ve been having a conversation with, that’s you and the waiter, and you just stiffed them on the tip. People like me remember that, and in the high tech industry, it’s rare that people only cross paths once in their lives.
It’s not hard to show respect to others and be polite. Don’t be rude, and it can’t not be rude, don’t lie. There’s no need, and we’ll remember when you do.
One of the biggest transgressors of this in my history is Google, to the point where I simply decline their recruiters. Besides the fact that I just don’t like their general recruiting practices (a friend of mine recently described it as factory farming, and I think that’s perfect) their recruiters pull this “no longer useful so you don’t exist” on a regular basis. It happened again last October, only it was even worse than normal, because when they did contact me, I declined the contact, but they came back three more times encouraging me to pursue the position, until I finally updated the resume. Which the recruiter said he loved and couldn’t wait to get to the manager, and he’d call me in a week to let me know what was going on.
Still waiting. Which is why I don’t deal with Google recruiters any more, or consider positions there. I’m tired of institutionalized rudeness.
At least I’ve never been lied to by them, so that’s something…
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