Good Recruiter, Bad Recruiter

Working in IT seems to be an automatic magnet to recruiters. Which is a good thing, because that generally means you’re working in a field where there’s a shortage of supply to fulfill demand. So you should feel flattered. Or should you? Here are some of the poor habits of recruiters I’ve encountered. Because… well, it’s fun to point out where others could improve :)

  • Bad recruiter starts a cold sales pitch with “I’m sorry to approach you directly, but…”. Bad recruiter is really not sorry at all. Au contraire, mon ami. Looking for a pretty poor way to start a new relationship? Pro tip: make sure your first two words are a lie. Rock-solid way to get the trust-building going.
  • Bad recruiter writes: “I found your very interesting profile online.” Then proceeds to point out something or ask a question that makes clear that however interesting bad recruiter may have found your profile, it apparently was not so interesting as to actually warrant reading.
  • Bad recruiter contacts you out of the blue. You spend time politely indicating that this is not a good time for you to switch jobs or you’re not really interested in the kind of position they’re offering. Bad recruiter never responds. Apparently, it’s fine for bad recruiter to claim your time even if not asked to, but you’re not really worthy of bad recruiter’s own time of you’re not likely to earn him money.
  • Bad recruiter is not a recruiter at all, but some troll from a continent far far away and trying to trick you into sharing contact details by faking a job offer.
  • Bad recruiter is offering a position that involves giving up all securities for the unique opportunity to work on a single project for him at a ridiculous rate. Bad recruiter is very surprised this does not sound as appealing to you as it does to him.
  • Bad recruiter will not tell you for which client he is recruiting out of fear you might contact his client directly, even though most recruitment contracts explicitely forbid this kind of circumvention by the client. Bad recruiter expects you to say yes to a meeting with an unknown entity without disclosing the entity.
  • Bad recruiter makes an effort to come across as personal by sharing details about the last weekend trip to [tourist location goes here], little Johnny’s accomplishments as a promising soccer wunderkind and, believe it or not, the weather as of late (who doesn’t love the budding of Spring?). As it turns out, Bad recruiter sent the exact same personal message to at least 3 of your closest colleagues and is actually just buttering you up to read the new offers that have no relevance to your previously discussed preferences.

I’m thinking there’s still a whole lot of market share out there for Good Recruiter to do business. Please give me a call.