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Just who is doing the testing hiring, anyway?
"Institutionalized hiring methods have removed a manager's responsibility and authority from hiring. Corporate America would do well to stop letting psychologists, test companies, and personnel jockeys do the manager's primary job, recruiting and hiring..." Ask The Headhunter's Nick Corcodilos holds forth in Inc. magazine's Hire Expectations.

An interview with our very own Headhunter
In the eat-or-be-eaten world of job hunting, if you misfire, you're dead. Here's how to hunt like a headhunter -- and turn your next job interview into a sure kill. Interview With A Headhunter in Fast Company.

Living in the carcass: Little mammals amongst the dinosaur bones
After the asteroid hit the dot-com planet a few years ago, everything changed. The cool, dumb companies died. But a bunch of small, tough mammals moved in among the dinosaur bones and today they survive on used furniture and old technology, and -- surprise -- by having lives outside "the company." Welcome back to the 40-hour work week. Seattle Times writer Shirleen Holt tallies up the survivors and serves up a reminder about how good, small companies can make it — even after an apocalypse. 5 years after the bust, a sober, new reality.

HR: The bottom of the barrel?
Why does Human Resources have such a lousy reputation? Maybe it has earned it. There are some good HR people in the corporate world, but the profession -- according to the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) -- is largely under-educated and not concerned enough with the big picture. It's a dismal scene, and whether you are an employer or a job hunter, it's affecting your life. Keith Hammonds explains Why We Hate HR in a scathing and honest "outsider" review of the business, in Fast Company.

Understanding the new economies overseas
You think "outsourcing" is causing you problems? People overseas are stealing your job? It's all part of a bigger evolution in business, in economics, in culture, in religion, and in financial tools. This is the best article I've seen on what's really going on -- and the future is bright. As investment capital is generated overseas, those guys who "steal our jobs" are going to become our customers. If you live and work in the US, your challenge is to be ready with something to sell them. But first, understand how Bringing Muslim nations into the global century is going to change our lives -- and theirs. From Fortune.

The president isn't going to get you a job.
A recent report from the Associated Press [10/5/04] said, "Bush’s Democratic challenger, John Kerry, widened his lead on the question of who would create jobs. In a new AP-Ipsos Public Affairs poll, 54 percent of respondents favored Kerry on job creation, and 40 percent liked Bush." 

Yah, polls and presidents create jobs like I create jobs. Before you pull the lever in the voting booth, get something straight: Both parties are piling on the dung faster than you can shovel. Read Robert Samuelson's cautionary comments about Presidents & Jobs (Again) in The Washington Post. (You'll have to register [free] to read Samuelson's column.) Read his whole column, but here's the gist:

"I've argued that you should discount the candidates' rhetoric that they can easily affect the number or quality of new jobs. Outside forces -- the business cycle, new technologies, mass psychology -- eclipse a president's powers... Job creation is a market process. Companies hire when they think that demand and profit prospects justify more workers. I am not arguing that government policies don't matter. Taxes, regulations and subsidies create an economic climate -- for better or worse. In Europe, excessive taxes and regulations have stymied job creation. Sometimes government can, through changes in interest rates and budgets, affect the business cycle. But the whole process resists the purposeful manipulation implied by George Bush and John Kerry when they claim they can create a given number of jobs or a higher quality of jobs... On this subject, the candidates seem equally driven to hype and overpromise. The "jobs issue" is said to be fading in political importance. If so, it's no great loss."

The real cost of outsourcing
Everyone's crying about jobs going overseas and the salary gap that leaves in the US. But nobody's had anything to say about the management gap. Until now. Electronic Engineering Times' Ron Wilson explains how "not doing the job here" creates a vacuum in management expertise. Where have all the managers gone?

Non-Compete Zombies
Are you about to sign a non-compete agreement? Worse, have you already signed one? Or, do you even know what an NCA is? Pull that seat belt tight, Buck-o, and feel the G's slam your career into the Stone Age. It all depends on what state you live in, and on how nasty your company wants to be... Beware "Zombie" Clauses in EE Times. (This article focuses on engineers, but the legal issues will confront anyone with a professional-level job.) And if you want more, proceed to Signing non-compete agreements for fun and profit.

Save $10,000 in 10 minutes.
Is someone offering to sell you "access to hidden jobs"? Before you part with a nickel, make sure it's not a scam. “It’s about deception,” says Patricia Kelly, the Attorney General of Illinois who has charged Bernard Haldane Associates with numerous counts of fraud and deception. Before you fork over $10,000 for "access to hidden jobs", watch 10 minutes of this CTV-Canada W-Five news broadcast. CTV interviews people who say they were fleeced; shows a wild hidden-camera sales presentation; confronts Lance Hurley, Haldane’s director of client services; and talks with AG Kelly about her investigation. This is a great tutorial on how to save precious money and time when you're job hunting. Help Wanted. (Look for the video link.)

The best question.
Here goes again... this issue is subtitled "A Guide for the Perplexed Exec" and 21 experts hold forth with 21 answers to 21 make-or-break questions about "your current job, your next career, and life inside your own company." The Headhunter tackles number 16, "What is the single best interview question ever -- and the best answer?" In Fast Company's All The Right Moves. (Scroll down to #16.)

Armchair recruiting: Your competition is eating your lunch.
Managers, recruiters, and personnel jockeys alike smirk disdainfully when I suggest that all managers should devote 20-30% of their time to actively recruiting new hires. "Nice idea, but there's no way." Or, "Yah, right. And who is supposed to do the rest of the manager's job?" Well, there is a way, and Sergey Brin and Larry Page (founders of Google) have found it. They mandate that all employees devote 20% of their time to recruiting. Why? Because good new hires do the rest of the manager's job, so she can spend more time recruiting. (Kinda Zen, ain't it?) But what the hell does Google know? They're just a bunch of kids. Can Google grow up? in Fortune. Go ahead, recruit from your armchair. Enjoy bread and water while your competition eats your lunch. 

Eyes wide shut.
You take care to prevent identity theft; you protect your kids from strangers; you like to keep your personal life private; you hate spam. But then you hand your social security number to a web site; you put private information about your kids online; you tell the world about your medical condition; and you give spammers your email address. Didn't even know you were doing it, eh? Are you using services like Monster.com's FastWeb to get help identifying colleges and scholarships for your kids? Did you join one of those new online "networking" sites, like Eliyon, to help you find sales leads or maybe a new job? Then you're toast. How's that? It's those sneaky consent agreements… and more. The World Privacy Foundation exposes the holes in your Web: Job searching in the networked environment. You may think it's all just part of using the Net. Wait til someone puts the pieces together and steals your identity. 

The emperor above the glass ceiling has no clothes?
In what is possibly the best article ever written about women in high places, Fast Company's Linda Tischler turns the "glass ceiling" question on its ear. Is the problem that women can't get into top executive jobs, or is the problem that men are more willing to trade their lives for the executive suite? Tischler doesn't argue any point -- instead, she illuminates the dark place and lets you draw your own conclusions about what's up there. The article left me in awe of the women who have attained top jobs and then chosen to give them up. Read this article, and you'll realize that the real problem isn't why more women aren't in top jobs -- it's why men would want those jobs. Is it possible that in a scant one or two generations, women have discovered -- and rejected -- a choice that men have lived with for a century? Where are the women?

10 questions every job hunter should ask
When the board of directors meets, it takes a top-view of its company's business. And it asks tough questions because the board is responsible for one main objective: producing a profit. If you think that you, as a job hunter, don't need to worry about that objective, then the candidate I coached will squash you. Start thinking like a board member (and like a shareholder) and your equity in the job interview will put you in a class by yourself. Ten Questions Every Board Member Should Ask are disussed in detail in Fortune.

Is career counseling a bunch of hooey?
A provocative new book written by a researcher who doesn't work in the employment industry says the career counselors have got it all wrong. Ex-Harvard Biz School professor Herminia Ibarra (now at Insead) spent three years investigating approaches to career change -- and how well they work (or don't). Her main conclusion: traditional career counseling methods actually distract more than they help career changers, because they emphasize planning, introspection, and careful implementation of new career plans. Why, and what's the answer?

CareerBuilder's New Ad Campaign:
What's a sucker worth?

Here's the fantasy. You're the HR manager. I'm the job hunter. Mary, over in the marketing department, needs to fill a job. She's waiting for you to give her some resumes that you gathered. In this fantasy, I give you $150 bucks. (I smile a wicked smile, and you arch an eyebrow.) You take all those resumes you collected and you bury them under your desk. Then you give Mary my resume. $150. Everybody's happy. Right? It's all in CareerBuilder's new ad campaign.

Bernard Haldane: Busting the bad boys.
Bernard Haldane & Associates, the esteemed "career management" firm, has lots of new prospects -- agents from the Illinois State Attorney General's office. If you know Ask The Headhunter, you know my warnings about such services are strict: Stay away. The details of this case expose the fraud behind the marketing verbiage you've seen used by countless crooks in the same business. Don't miss this special edition of It's Got Teeth: Busting the bad boys. It will alert you to the jargon that reveals other hustlers in the employment rackets.

We don't always have time to check references.
Is your company one of those that checks candidate references after a job offer is made? Do you check up on college degrees? Hold on to your seats: "A 2002 probe by the federal General Accounting Office found more than 1,200 resumes on a government Internet site listed degrees that actually came from diploma mills." Gotcha! Diploma mills insert degree of fraud into job market in USA Today.

How to draft 390 people to conduct your job search.
Monster isn't the only "jobs service" hawking quantity-over-quality as the best way to get a job. Now Execu-Net, the "exclusive" online executive job listing service is advising you to turn your job search into a multi-level marketing game. Get ready to lose all your friends, because this strategy has teeth, and it really bites.

Jobs go bye-bye.
I've gotten tired of all the hackneyed complaints about US jobs being shipped overseas. Everyone complains, but no one cuts to the root of the problem. Heads up: The U.S. Is Falling Asleep on the Job, in Fortune. This is the only thoughtful article I've read on the subject.

Lemme see your shoes.
Should they be handing out Odor-Eaters® at the airport security checkpoints, or arrest warrants? Turns out over 1,000 recently hired TSA screeners have criminal records. Ooops. "HR experts believe there are employment tests and software to accomplish any task -- including hiring 50,000 workers overnight. It’s not only a fallacy, it’s a fraud." So says The Headhunter in Big, Fast And Easily Bungled, in Workforce Magazine. (And if you're a TSA exec, don't miss Nick's off-the-wall solution.)

Whooops! Monster tosses its cookies...
Who's been telling you for years about the risks of posting your resume on those dopey job sites? Now, the "big one" coughs up the truth: Monster.com warns of ID theft. Thank you, CNet. (Anybody got a box of those wipes...?)

There's lots more in the It's Got Teeth Archive... if you want it.

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I just downloaded
How to Work with Headhunters. Excellent! I will recommend that each of our Executive MBAs get this book. It's a very comprehensive treatment of every aspect of recruiting, search firms, career management firms and more. I especially like the Back of the Napkin section at the end. Looks like you thought of everything!

Susan Dearing
ProMBA Career Management Center
Anderson School of Management