Saturday, March 26, 2011


Every so often one of my fabulous former candidates will reach out and ask, "How's the market?" To which I always ask..."What are you making?"

Recently, a candidate answered as follows - "...well my base is $140K plus I make a 30% bonus..." After I picked myself up off the floor, I told her, "Retire there!!!" But if you decide to leave, here's MY resume. I know there's a bit of curiosity in all of us, and nothing would make me happier than pulling her out, placing her somewhere else and then refilling her spot. But my conscience just can't do it. Sometimes the grass, instead of being greener, is dead and covered in dog shit!

I know it's hard to see a good thing when you've been in a job for a few years as curiosity can definitely get the best of us. And unfortunately when it does, and you decide to leave for bigger and better, sometimes you wish you hadn't. I've had quite a few candidates leave jobs after 5+ years and never find that same job again. Unfortunately they are looking for that comfort on day one that took FIVE years to establish.  More money may equal a new wardrobe OR...more therapy sessions! It's important to realize that just because the silver lining is wearing a bit, it doesn't mean you can't polish it and make it look pretty again. In other words, the evil that you know is ALWAYS better than the evil that you don't!

So what else can you do when you get antsy at a job and wine and cheese is just not quelling it? If you work for a large company where opportunities are posted internally, you should always be scanning for something enticing. Companies LOVE to hire internally as it's a money saver for them and they already know your shortcomings (and love you in spite of them). Talk to the HR executives within the organization and explain why you want a new position. Now remember, this is not for those that have worked for 6 months and feel like they are "ready for a promotion." Those people need to do a 180 and march right back to their desk with a hot latte for their boss and get back to work. This is for those people that have really reached the ceiling on their position and while they LOVE the company, they are a bit bored with their day-to-day responsibilities. Often times HR is THRILLED because you just made their job that much easier.

If you work for a small company or an individual and/or you've truly hit the proverbial glass ceiling, commit to making a move...but CHOOSE WISELY. Tell everyone you know that you're looking. Work with a few recruiters that you trust and be explicit with them with regards to what you want (and more importantly, DON'T WANT). And leave no stone unturned. The web is a wonderful resource and provides a plethora of options for the savvy job seeker. But most importantly, carefully weigh out the pros and cons of what you're looking for and make sure you're next move is the right one. Because at the end of the day, the right decision could be to stay put...and it's important to realize a good thing when you have it...right Brian Dunkleman????

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


The other day, I had a candidate interview with a very high profile client of mine and before she would commence the interview, she asked the COO to sign a confidentiality agreement. That's right...SHE (the candidate) asked HIM (the potential employer) to sign a CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT. If I was my client I would've looked her right in the eye and said, "Honey, I don't give a shit where you worked, nor do I care." Needless to say, they passed.

It's amazing how after 10 years in the business (LONG years I might add), candidates never cease to amaze me. If you think Charlie Sheen's lost his mind, spend six months recruiting and you'll apply to be his intern. He's got NOTHING on the crazies I deal with. Back in the day, when I was looking for jobs, my goal was to GET them...but for some reason that doesn't seem to be the case anymore. Candidates have their own agenda and most feel they are in the driver's seat. They can say what they want, do what they want and these employers will bow down and beg them to come work at their companies. One turned down a final interview at a hedge fund because the job started at 7:45...but when I asked her if she would interview for another fund where the job started at 8, she was TOTALLY on board. If my Swatch is working correctly, That's FIFTEEN minutes...what on earth could you possibly do during those 15 minutes that you would rule out a six figure job with full benefits and free lunch? If you take out your clothes the night before and put your lip gloss on on the subway, you're golden...15 extra minutes just for you! There are people STARVING out there...what the hell are you thinking?

Another wouldn't interview for a job that wasn't within a 10-block radius. Now "geographically undesirable" is a prerequisite for employment...are you fucking kidding me? We just came off the WORST ECONOMIC CRISIS since the depression, and you can't take the subway? What happens if they close a street for a going to take a personal day? The stipulations, demands and restrictions that candidates place on their job searches are unbelieveable. I understand that you may not be desperate for a new position, but when you make it near impossible, you may as well not look at all.

The other day I was meeting with a wonderful candidate and she asked me why it was better to look for a job when you have a job. The answer is simple...when you start your job search it's usually for one of four reasons - you're unhappy, there's no room for growth, you want more money or your company is having issues. But as long as you're employed, you're not desperate. This is the MAIN difference between someone who is employed and looking for a job and someone who is not. When you are employed, you have the comforts of a paycheck and a place to go every day while you look for something better. Companies are enticed by the idea of "stealing" someone away because they can offer them bigger and better. The unemployed are at a disadvantage because companies know they need a source of income and many will take the next best thing that comes along...whether they want to or not. Most of my clients don't want to see extended lengths of time between jobs as it could indicate laziness or lack of drive which are big turnoffs to potential employers. At the very least, you should be temping. If you are unemployed, cancel your cable, padlock the liquor/candy cabinets, burn your sweats and get your fat ass off the couch. The best way to make yourself marketable is to keep up your skills, find temp work within your said profession and make finding a job a full time job.

If you think about it, most of the changes you've made in your life were powered by one of two feelings...Inspiration or Desperation. If you are a conscious, living, breathing adult, there is no reason to wait for the latter. Inspiration exists all over the place. On TV. In magazines. On the web. In the park. Even from the person sitting next to you on the subway knitting (if you've had a burning desire to make a sweater). And when you do get inspired, MAKE the change. We are our worst enemies and if we only make changes when we are desperate, Jenny Craig will have an endless choice of Kirstie Alleys.

Good Night and Happy Job Hunting,
The Job Yenta

Thursday, March 10, 2011


We've all taken jobs that for one reason or another...SUCK. The workload was ridiculous. The people were atrocious. The boss was GODZILLA...or all of the above. You tried to persevere, but to no avail. At the end of the day, week, 3-month guarantee, you realize that you are the proud owner of a one way ticket to HELL (and your clothes are NOT flame-retardant). At this point, it's time to make a decision. Do you quit, give two weeks notice, organize your files and clean out your inbox of all "family and friends" emails and stupid jokes your dad sent you? Or do you throw out ALL important documents, infect your computer with a virus and walk out the door with your finger held high???

Obviously the former is the high road, but sometimes the latter feels SO much better. But at the end of the day, you just have to cut your losses and realize that while every pot has its lid, you're not interested in a some crappy job. This doesn't mean you're a failure or will never find another job just means that you made the wrong decision. It happens. Get over it. No need to wallow...just move on to bigger and better. Go out there and when someone asks, "So why did you leave Suckmyass Capital?" You say, "It wasn't the right fit." This isn't the time to drag your bosses name through the mud, or tell the interviewer how your coworkers were getting high in the bathroom. Save that for your tell all. Instead, smile, sit up nice and straight and LIE. And when I say lie, it's only in this particular situation...when the job REALLY wasn't the right fit. Not because you were insubordinate; stole something; or failed the company's mandated drug test. But when the job and you just didn't get along and you mutually decided to shake hands and part ways, "It wasn't the right fit," is completely acceptable. No one wants to hear your tale of woe. We've all had at least one horrible job (if anyone says different they are either lying or sleeping with their boss) but no one wants to hire the person who bitches about it.

A very dear friend of mine was coming off what I would call my worst nightmare...a devastating tragedy. She was so distraught she walked away from her amazing career because the thought of dealing with the world was the last thing she wanted to do. After a few months of healing, she called me to see if I could help put her on a new path. I had placed her in her first job out of school and we had always stayed in touch and over the years had developed a wonderful friendship. So what did I do? I convinced this poor girl that recruiting was EXACTLY what she wanted to be doing. And stupid her...BELIEVED ME! So together we set out to make her recruiter extraordinaire! And in six short weeks she quickly became...unemployed. Hated every single minute of the 12,960 that she spent in my company's employ. And when she left, it was not under the best conditions. But you know what? During those 27 days of torture, she realized that being amongst the corporate bullshit was just where she needed to be. Amongst the pompous and the crazy and the weird guy at the front desk. So she went back into the wonderful world of trends and strategy and intellect, knee deep in corporate bullshit and ecstatic to be there. She picked herself up, brushed herself off, and kicked some corporate ass. Just like I always knew she could. So this blog is dedicated to her and all that I know she of the smartest, strongest, most amazing women I have ever met. Here's to you're my hero!

Good night and happy job hunting,
The Job Yenta