Headhunters and Cold Calls

As an IT professional, I’m reasonably senior in my chosen field and fairly visible at that, so I get quite a few cold calls and emails, asking me to consider this or that position. The best callers have done their homework so at least I get a decent discussion. Sometimes I even get an offer. Most, however, haven’t done their due diligence at all. Am I a Java developer? No. Am I a software architect? Not really. Do I need lists of people using software similar to that of my latest client’s? No, absolutely not.

My pet peeve right now is the laziest of the lot, recruiters emailing me long lists of openings as varied as a 95-yo’s prescription meds list. Would I please have a look and see if something is of interest. In other words, I can’t be bothered to do my homework, so can you please do it for me?

I’m sure some of these people think they’re helping me out, but most aren’t all that interested. They have a job to do but emailing one list to a 1,000 people is so much easier these days than reading said list before splitting it into meaningful groups and then matching profiles with each group. It’s the scammer mentality: if 1% thinks the Nigerian prince and his gold mine are real, then the campaign is a success!

The problem, of course, is that headhunters, recruiters and the like, unlike scammers, do not operate anonymously. LinkedIn is a big place, but not that big, and eventually word gets out. Recruiter A is not serious. Avoid. Sure, it will take time, but ask yourself:

Do you really want to be that guy?

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