The open secret: I don’t need a job but I do want one.
Knowing this fact gives a tremendous advantage to anyone looking into hiring me. You know that if you want me to do something that I don’t really feel like doing but I happen to be good at, you have to pay a premium. On the other hand, if you are able to offer me something that I enjoy doing, you could pay me peanuts.
It is really that simple, you just need to figure out what makes me tick and whether I’m a good match for your company. In short, you need to research about me a bit, which probably includes reading this blog entry.
As amazing as it sounds, I get multiple calls a month from recruiters and companies who actually know nothing about me before calling. This the main reason I don’t take any of them seriously. Let me give you a short example of the past two weeks:
“Good morning Joaquin, we’ve got your cv from IE Careers Services and after reviewing it we thought you are a perfect match for a position we have available. [Description of position here]… let me ask you, do you speak English?”
Another call yesterday:
“Good morning, I was looking at your resume and it’s very impressive. I see you know some technology… oh… wait… you have a computer science degree… wow… do you happen to know how to do mobile applications?”
I could go on for an hour about how wrong this was but it does happen to me on a weekly basis! I would not expect anyone to know my life history when they call but hey! after 6 months sending resumes I haven’t gotten one single phone call where the person on the other side of the phone proved that they’ve done any research about me or read the first paragraph of my resume. I’m shocked. Everybody tells you not to upload compromising photos to fb because future employers might see them; on the other hand it seems that I could upload photos with underwear on my head while belly dancing and nobody would notice. I feel a bit insulted.
I did a quick test. My blog (and language skills) is at the first paragraph of my resume but maybe recruiters prefer Google. So let’s do it. www.google.com typed in Joaquin Grech. 846,000 results. Check them below:
First link? This blog! First page results? Links to my mobile applications, to my financial obsessions and to my hundreds of entries at different forums and blogs. I’ve been an internet user since 1994 or so. It would literally take you 30 seconds to know the basics about me and in half hour you’ll have more information that you need for any job position you have in mind: MBA, dual degree in Computer Science and Latin American Studies, honors, my complete lack of fashion sense and modesty, obsession with technology, investing and worshipping of Warren Buffett, my entrepreneurial edge, my projects, clubs and other blogs, my linkedin, youtube, facebook and twitter! (just in case you didn’t want to go through the Google results).
If someone like me with 846,000 personal Google results is not contacted by any recruiter that seems to do any research, then I’m expecting this to be a common situation. Do you share the experience?
When applying for a job one basic rule is that you can’t go to a job interview without knowing the company. Otherwise it proves lack of interest on the applicant. The most obvious question at every interview is some variation of: why did you apply to this position and what interest you about our company? In theory, you should be able to answer this question fast, passionately, with a smile on your face and actually mean it. What most people fail to see is that it should work the other way around too.
I’ve done a test myself. I ask this question at interviews: “What caught your eye about my resume and why do you think I’m a potential employee at this company?”
Try it yourself. You’ll be surprised. First, you’ll look awesome; secondly, they’ll usually begin reading your resume while trying to look like they are not doing it. Looking fast for “why the heck did we call this guy?” And if the resume happens to be far from reach… you’ll be amazed at the ramblings. Some might be smarter and reply with “I can’t share that information, but why do you think you are a good candidate?” or in that line. In short, they haven’t done their job.
Ironically this doesn’t mean that you are interviewing for a horrible company. Usually they are recruiters that the company outsourced, they don’t even work IN the company or know anything really meaningful about it besides that they are “big” and “pay us”. Other times they are just horrible HR people but that you won’t ever see again after joining the company. In rare occasions he/she is actually your future boss, and if that’s the case… do you want to work for someone that doesn’t even show the least interest about you?
Let me finish this post on a positive note. I personally don’t want to program. I’m not looking for a programmer position although many recruiters seem to think so because it’s the most visible part of my profile: games, web sites, and so on. I actually enjoy leading teams in all kind of projects. What I found is that to get a great team you need to have genuine/sincere admiration and knowledge of your team members. As an example I’m doing two new mobile games for Android and Apple devices. I’m the project leader but I do the programming because it’s my hobby. The graphic design, music and so on is done by others. It took me literally 2 hours to find all and each of the team members. All of them are incredibly talented and rock stars in a field that could command a good amount of $. None I called saying: tell me about yourself. My calls (or emails) were more like: “I saw your site, I saw your blog, I ADMIRE your work. I can only offer this and that because this is a hobby for me, but I would love to have you on my team.” They don’t seem to be approached like this very often because some even offered to collaborate for free or take time out of their busy schedule to help me out. Meanwhile, I keep hearing recruiters complaining about how they are not able to find talent. I think there are some lessons to be learned here.
To find out more about myself, shoot me an email. And please, don’t ask me if I speak English.