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Aaron N. Tubbs

Dragon chaser.

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I made bread pudding to take to work this weekend, and my favorite comment all day was from an older male coworker, “Thanks for the pudding, it proves that the only way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Very juicy.” It is also the comment that may well give me nightmares and cold sweats, but so be it. As I’ve said again and again, if you don’t own The New Joy of Cooking, you really should.

I’ve started getting headhunter calls; I think it is due to the bonus season starting up again, which means they are trying to get in now to catch the fallout on the other side of the payouts. Most of the guys thus far seem to be looking for people in operations. This is of course a little worrying, since my resume is not intended to suggest that I’m an operations guy. That said, it seems that there is a pretty quick network of passing names to the appropriate headhunter once you’re in the system. I suspect there is some sort of kickback system within the system, or at least a gentleman’s resume-passing agreement. Either way I suppose it’s free entertainment at this point.

Having had this experience, I’ve decided it’s time to put together initial guidelines for a headhunter aptitude test. This is not meant to cover anything beyond the first five minutes of your experience with a headhunter. For those of you playing at home, start with ten points, and go through the following modifiers. These are all based on real situations thus far.

  1. Take one point away if the headhunter makes a shuffling sound but says nothing for a few moments when you greet them with your name.
  2. Take another point if the headhunter says “Oh, really? Oh, right, I have yours here, just a sec.”
  3. Take one point away if the headhunter calls more than 15 minutes after a scheduled time, another if more than 30, another if more than 60, and two more if they don’t call until a later date or never call back.
  4. Take a point if it is obvious that the headhunter is reading your resume for the first time while they talk to you.
  5. Take two points if the headhunter is solely recruiting for positions for which your resume does not even remotely suggest you are experienced, qualified, or interested.
  6. Take another point for a headhunter in the above situation who offers to “keep you in the system” in case they “come across anything.”
  7. Take another point for each time a headhunter says they are an “extremely selective globally renowned recruiting agency” or anything remotely similar, even if it is true.

Now tally up your score. Did your headhunter pass?

Completely unrelated, I wanted to mention (in a digression, no less) that there was recently a fantastic article in the New Yorker on the bell curve, as a commentary on healthcare, with cystic fibrosis as the specific example. If you have a little time, I really think it is worth the read. It raises a lot of interesting questions about topics like healthcare specialization, the best healthcare vs. the best experience, loyalty, and the true power of being rich and flexible.