Starving Cannibals

August 27, 2000

Ok, so there are not so many of them around anymore, which is probably good news for those of us who don't carry a spear.


If it is your job to hunt heads, Hunt em already.

I saw the job posting in late July, just after I returned from speaking. An empty office, thanks to new baby Zack, leaves me alone and searching the Internet for job postings.

It looked perfect. I thought it had my picture on it.

So I called. The cannibal had posted her name and phone number, employee of a rather large firm specializing in feeding corporate America.

"Sounds good to me, Send me your resume today so I can see all the details."

Next day I call her, not the other way around and she suggests, "Ok, you need to get into our local office, because we let the firms know that we have done a preliminary interview."

I schedule the "interview" for Monday, July 31, several days away. Fret the weekend, and show up on time.

I think they just wanted to see a living breathing body, because the "interview" was not really a serious one, but was conducted by Jeff, a pleasant local member of the tribe. Jeff told me he would forward my information out to California.

More fretting.

It seemed too right. The pay was right, the location was more than right. The skills requested were a 100 percent match.


I called a friendly cannibal in Florida and asked..."what's with the profession? Is this silence normal?" He told me that since pay was on a contingent basis, one hunted the most immediately viable head. In other words, one that could be eaten quickly.

Oh goodie.

I waited till the 17th of August and decided that I would fire off an E-mail to Ms. HH. Maybe she is full I thought, but at least she can spend a second to reply.

No answer.

Finally after 5 more days I call Jeff.

"Jeff, this is, in my estimation, rather unprofessional. You advertise for a position which is not, well, "entry level." Your firm boasts about how well they conduct their business, and here I hear nothing, zero, zip, nada, after I come in for an interview.

Jeff says he will call her, and let me know. I don't mind being told my head is too hard to boil and serve up, but at least let me know something. Anything.

Jeff calls on Thursday morning, to tell me there is reply from Ms. HH.

NSR, bored again, goes out looking on the www for more positions. Still has in the back of his mind, that one was good, more than good.. It was "right."

Presto, again on Thursday, on another web site, same job listed, and posted on August 20. Now wait a minute. I look at the calendar and notice that the new posting is 3 weeks after I go into the local office for an interview for this particular job. New cannibal listed this time, and I give her a call.

"Mary, is the "director" position still open at.... ?

She pulls the posting and says.. yes.. and on we go with me giving her the details about the silence.

"Send me your resume.... and I will call Jeff in the local office and have him fax your information out to us.

I tell Mary, "Look, I want in front of these people, and I'll pay for the airfare, it's not a problem." She told me she would work on it and would call me on Friday.

I decided not to trust her and called Jeff myself. He sends the forms.

Friday morning is spent with clients, and when I returned to the office about 2, there were no calls, no messages, no E-mail, silence.

NSR was beginning to get bummed again.

3:45 she calls. "Good News" says NSR, Mary called back. Thank you thank you.

Mary says... "Better news NSR, they liked what they have seen. They want a few details about this and that, and I need to know if you have any scheduling problems in the next several weeks so we can plan an interview around them."

Now I don't know if the firm will come through with an interview or not. But the lesson in this is, if you want your head hunted, you may have to hand it to a cannibal on a platter.

And about the job?

Spouse and I looked at the climate difference between Michigan and San Diego, and guess what?

They don't get snow, and the sun shines there a lot.