The Used Car Salesman

I think I’ve finally figured out what we are.

Sure, there have been the eHarmony and of IT jokes….but what we really are is just what the Information Technology industry needs…JOBFAX!

After all, the used car industry has CARFAX, to tell you the real story about the car that you’re looking to buy so that you don’t have to rely on the word of the skeevy guy in a bad suit trying to sell you that five year old Mustang.

“No, it wasn’t in New Orleans when Katrina hit”, “No, it’s never been in an accident and nearly totaled”, “No, it wasn’t shot up in a drive by in South Central”.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could get the real deal on that job the recruiter has lined up for you…

It may sound like you’re lucking into the job of a lifetime…but, well, if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times: “Communism looked really good on paper, too”.

Once in a lifetime!

Sadly, in many cases you don’t really have a relationship with the recruiter you’re dealing with on this new job.

You may have met them once or twice…but you don’t really know them.  There’s no real vested interest there.  Sort of like running into a used car salesman in a bar one night who tells you about that low mileage Mustang in “awesome” condition that just came in…you might want to ask a few questions of that recruiter with the “awesome” job req that just came in.

After all, the car salesman is just looking to move cars off of their lot, just like recruiters are trying to fill jobs.  Why?  Because that’s how and when they get paid, that’s why.

And neither is usually going to voluntarily offer up the negatives that might keep you from fulfilling your part in the transaction.

Like that low mileage Mustang…maybe it’s low mileage because it was stolen off the lot, used in six bank robberies, shot up by the FBI during the pursuit and capture (and killing…in the car…there’s a reason why the interior was redone, folks…) and was just recently released and picked up at auction.  But is the sales guy going to tell you that if you don’t ask?  Oh hell, no.

And that dream job…maybe it’s vacant and needs someone to fill it because the manager is a tyrranical freak who keeps it together during the interview process well enough to get people to take the job…but six different people have taken and quit that same job in the past 18 months because of them.  Again…you think a random recruiter is going to offer up that little tidbit?  Probably not.

Some of them are really slick about it too (read: “evil“), and they know there are some things that they can’t hide all the way…so they try to slip it in casually and hope that you’re either already in love with the deal and aren’t thinking clearly any more, or that you won’t notice.

You know, something like “Oh, yeah…it might need new tires, but that’s easy enough to handle on this sweet deal on this car, right? Right!” …knowing damned well and good that there’s one barely hanging together tie rod that’s just one pothole away from destroying the alignment and will cost thousands to get repaired properly.

Or how much would you love to hear “Yeah, so we talked to the client…and the bill rate came back a little lower than we expected, and so we’re going to have to shave a few dollars an hour off of what we pay you”…after you’ve already turned in your notice at your current job! …when that higher bill rate dangled in front of you was never there to begin with.

And wouldn’t it be nice to know if the place you’re taking a contract to hire gig has a notorious reputation for letting people go the week before the hire-in date kicks in so that they don’t actually have to hire you?

Sadly…all of those situations are real, and ones that I’ve seen happen.

Welcome to

After all, that’s what networking in general allows you to do, and what we specifically try to make sure you have available.  Getting good information.  Meeting the right people.  Letting you get to know recruiters with a clue so that you don’t wind up broken down on the side of the highway after picking up a clunker off a back lot.  We purge the used car salesmen out of the group, and we make sure that there’s a good and open flow of communication and information available to you.

But recruiters…it helps if you just Don’t Be That Guy as a starting point.

…and that’s all for this time. Check out our other Don’t Be That Guy entries or something else, and we look forward to seeing you at future events.