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Wednesday, September 24, 2008

My two favorite things

Found this article about recruiting and Jounrey!! Now if I could only interview in my torn jeans. Enjoy!

What a Journey!

Posted By Ross Clennett On September 24, 2008 @ 6:07 am In News and Features | 1 Comment ⁢

I was surfing the Internet this week and came across a fabulous story that is a perfect metaphor for how much things have changed in the world of recruitment since the rise of the Internet coincided with the global shortage of skills. Unusually, it's a recruitment story from the work of rock music.

The story revolves around rock band Journey, which has existed in various guises since 1973. I suspect anyone younger than an 'old Gen X' (like me) won't have heard of them unless they regularly listen to classic rock radio.

Journey were huge during the early to mid 1980's with American Top 10 hits such as "Who's Crying Now," "Open Arms," and "Don't Stop Believing," (probably better known to pop culture aficionados as the song Tony Soprano selects from the jukebox in the closing scene of The Sopranos' final episode).

Journey's lead vocalist at the time, Steve Perry, scored a 1984 hit with the single, Oh Sherrie (confession: I have the vinyl single somewhere in storage).

Last year Journey founder and lead guitarist, Neal Schon, was attempting to recruit a new lead vocalist to replace the departed Perry. Frustrated with the options he had auditioned live, Schon turned to the Internet and spent hours surfing scores of YouTube videos, looking at bands and singers to see whether he might discover what he was looking for online.

Amongst the many wannabes and try-hards, he stumbled upon a video by a popular Filipino cover band, The Zoo.

Schon listened in amazement as 40-year-old lead singer, Arnel Pineda, [2] belted ⁢⁣ out a stunning and note-perfect version of one of Journey's biggest 1980's hits, Faithfully (amongst many other cover versions The Zoo had posted on YouTube).

Schon messaged The Zoo via YouTube, and although Pineda initially thought it was a hoax, Schon eventually convinced Pineda he was for real, and asked Pineda whether he was interested in auditioning for the vacant lead singer's role.

Six weeks later, a still shell-shocked Pineda was winging his way to San Francisco for a two-day audition with Journey.

In December 2007, Pineda was announced as Journey's new lead singer, followed three months later by his debut, fronting the band live at a Chilean music festival to an ecstatic fan reaction, glowing reviews, and a television audience of 25 million.

Revitalized by its new lead singer, Journey quickly recorded a new album which it released in June and is currently in the middle of summer/autumn tour of the USA with fellow 1980's classic rockers, Heart and Cheap Trick.

What a fantastic story for the new world of recruitment: a story covering globalization, [3] Web 2.0 ⁢⁣ , and non-traditional [4] sourcing ⁢⁣ strategies.

What I most love about this tale is that a U.S. rock band, whose fan base is solidly in the Midwest, resisted the temptation to go for a singer who "looked right" and instead recruited the best-performed, most-competent singer, even though he was from Manila, speaks heavily accented English, and doesn't look like Steve Perry (save the long dark hair) or the band's fan demographic.

It would be easy to dismiss this story as unique to music and not relevant to recruiters.

I believe that would be a mistake.

Consider that in this Journey-finds-new-lead-singer story, the following occurred via the World Wide Web:

*The employer sourced a potential employee, living in another country, online.
*The employer contacted the potential employee.
*The competence of the potential employee was able to be assessed sufficiently well to arrange a live interview (audition) in another country without any need for a resume.

No recruiter was involved in the process.

When you consider the growth of career portals and the rise of online testing of skills, competencies, and motivations, recruitment in the 21st century has only just begun.

As we rapidly head towards the 21st century's second decade, are you ready for what's ahead?


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Copyright © 2008 ERE Media. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Incredible recruitng article in WSJ!

I wonder if a corporate recruiter could get away with this?

Snack Vendor -- or Undercover Job Recruiter?

To Fill That Open Position,
These Guys Go to Extremes;
Stalking on the Ski Slopes
It was a humid June morning on David Perry's fourth day of masquerading as a snack-food vendor inside an industrial park. He had one day left on the canteen truck he'd rented for $500.
The executive recruiter, wearing a hairnet and an apron, finally got a customer to tell him what he needed to know: the identity of a technology guru a client had hired Mr. Perry to poach from a competitor.

David Perry has made his living off rogue recruiting tactics.
Mr. Perry's client didn't know this person's name. So for days, the recruiter had been asking every coffee, cigarette and sandwich buyer who the "genius" was behind the large, publicly traded company's top-selling piece of software. Finally, an unsuspecting patron spilled the beans, and Mr. Perry got his man. "It was real hard detective work, but it was fun," he says.
Executive recruiters typically rely on networking and corporate contacts to court prospects. But for those like the 48-year-old Mr. Perry -- a small subset of the multimillion-dollar industry -- chasing down top talent for the corner-office and other hard-to-fill jobs is a sport. They are maligned by traditional recruiters, but their tactics -- which can be unconventional, paparazzi-like and some say borderline unethical -- can lead to lucrative careers and long lists of loyal clients.
"How else can you get at these people?" says Mr. Perry, whose search firm, Perry-Martel International Inc., employs three researchers, plus his wife, Anita, who handles miscellaneous tasks. "They're behind steel gates."

Once, after dozens of failed attempts to reach through normal channels the CEO of a technology firm, Mr. Perry says, he hopped a plane and sneaked into the basement of his quarry's New York workplace and gave a janitor $100 and a self-addressed envelope. The Ottawa-based recruiter says he was counting on his target's having a private washroom with a phone -- and asked the janitor to send him its number. Mr. Perry says those digits arrived in the mail a few days later. Soon after, he scored a meeting with the executive, who agreed to take the position Mr. Perry was hawking: CEO of a large, publicly traded software company in New York.

In 2006, Peter Polachi, co-founder of Polachi & Co., a small search firm -- and another aggressive recruiter -- went after an executive whose online corporate bio described his love of fly-fishing in a particular river in Montana. After calling several outposts along the waterway, he found a guide who'd led the executive on numerous expeditions and was able to pinpoint this man's regular spot. "I know how to fly-fish, so I just 'happened' to bump into him," Mr. Polachi says. Though he succeeded in hooking the executive long enough for him to listen, a noncompete agreement prevented the person from changing jobs.

Three years earlier, Mr. Polachi pressed the assistant of a sought-after CEO on why the executive was too busy to take a call. The assistant blurted out that the executive kept such a tight schedule that he got up before dawn every morning just to have time to get his shoes polished. Mr. Polachi, based in Framingham, Mass., drove to New York and, on a hunch, took a seat the next morning at the shoeshine stand in his target's office building. The executive arrived minutes later and noticed a copy of his company's most recent annual report resting on his neighbor's lap. The CEO "struck up a conversation with me," says the headhunter. "At end of day, he was recruited."

Many senior executives who've been snagged using these extreme methods won't talk publicly about their experience. But clients and associates of Messrs. Perry and Polachi confirm their accounts.
"You're talking about a guy with an exceptionally high batting average," says Steve Panyko, who hired Mr. Perry to handle more than a dozen searches while serving as president of CML Emergency Services Inc., a telecom company that was sold in 2006. He has since retired.

Tod H. Loofbourrow, president and CEO of Authoria Inc., a global talent-management-software provider based in Waltham, Mass., credits Mr. Polachi with recruiting more than half of his firm's 12-person executive team.

The $500 Meeting

Not all ruses pan out. Mr. Perry once showed up at an executive's company Christmas party wearing a crisp white button-down shirt and black dress slacks -- just like the waiters working the event. Grabbing a tray, wine bottle and bar napkin from the kitchen, he walked the room until he found his target. Mr. Perry whispered to the man, "This message was left for you," and handed him a blank envelope. Inside was a note promising a $500 check toward the executive's charity of choice if he'd agree to meet the following day. Mr. Perry got the meeting and sent a check to a Chicago-based children's nonprofit. But during the face-to-face, it became clear that the executive was a poor cultural fit for his client, a large, Midwestern technology firm.

Some professionals say they're flattered by the recruiters' efforts to court them. "I like an aggressive person," says Brian Clark, who was recruited by Mr. Perry in the mid-1990s to a small technology company in Ottawa. Mr. Clark recalls Mr. Perry calling him every day for two weeks pitching the job. He wasn't interested in working for a start-up but finally budged after Mr. Perry mailed him a $600 plane ticket, leaving that week, to the potential-employer's office.

Mr. Clark, now vice president and general manager at Jade Software Corp. in Atlanta, later hired Mr. Perry to recruit talent for him. In 2002, the headhunter set his sights on Blake Carruthers for a sales position at Jade. When Mr. Carruthers failed to return the recruiter's numerous calls, he found himself face-to-face with Mr. Perry on a remote mountain-bike trail. Mr. Carruthers was about to traverse an intricate 15-mile path with a group of hardcore bikers. "I thought that maybe he was trying to lose some weight," says Mr. Carruthers of his double-take upon seeing Mr. Perry on a bike. It worked, though: He took the job.

That was the second time that Mr. Carruthers ran into Mr. Perry on a mountain. A few years earlier, the sales executive was skiing on an expert-level hill at a Quebec resort when he spotted Mr. Perry, an amateur skier, his arms flailing for Mr. Carruthers's attention and seemingly stuck halfway down the slope. "Within 30 seconds he goes, 'I got this opportunity I want to talk to you about,' " recalls Mr. Carruthers, who had been dodging the recruiter's phone calls.

Companies that Mr. Perry and Mr. Polachi poach from aren't as thrilled and consider rogue recruiters a menace. Mr. Perry says he has received more than 40 cease-and-desist letters, plus threats of lawsuits from employers he's lured talent from during his career. Some might argue that his job involves trespassing, but so far he hasn't been arrested.

Many in the recruiting industry also take issue with the brazen approach to headhunting. "It cheapens the reality of the hard work that goes into executive search," says Peter Felix, president of the Association of Executive Search Consultants, an industry group with 6,000 recruiter members in 70 countries.

"If you're in the business of recruiting leadership candidates, you have to bring tact, grace and integrity to the profession," adds Joseph Daniel McCool, who wrote "Deciding Who Leads" about the recruiting industry. "Reaching somebody in the bathroom, that's not the image that most search professionals would gravitate toward," he says.
Mr. Perry, whose Tudor-style home rests on one-and-a-half acres in the posh neighborhood of Gatineau, Quebec, says he earns about $500,000 a year.

Lucrative for Some

The average for recruiters who work on retainer at the partner level ranges from $350,000 to $400,000, says Brent W. Skinner, a director of executive-search research at Kennedy Information Inc. i n Peterborough, N.H. "But the ceiling can be much, much higher for exceptional performers in lucrative niches," he adds.
Mr. Perry charges clients about a third of the total first-year compensation for the jobs he fills and insists his recruiting style works. In 22 years, he says he has completed 991 searches for jobs paying roughly $170 million in salaries.
"I don't care if you're available [or not], I don't care if you want to move," says Mr. Perry. "I have to get in front of you and tell you why you should listen to me."

Saturday, September 6, 2008


If I ever have an advanced illness, feel free to NOT get me such a specific card. How depresing.

Monday, September 1, 2008

The final test run

This time all four guys are rowing instead of one at the end steering. WAY FASTER!!!!

This will be the last post for a while. Next steps, add the side wheels to keep us on the track and build the the viking boat body. For that, you'll have to come to the race. Details @ We hope to see ya' there!!!!!!!!!

Video of the Test Run!!!!!!!!

The picture is a little blurry but you'll get the idea.

The breaks work too!!!!

Next step. Building the boat frame and putting on the side wheels to hold us on the track.

On the way back........

Getting more speed now.

5 miles an hour here.......

So far so good.......



Here we go.

Depending on how things go this might be my last post. If so, erin and the cats get everything.

It is......

A lot lower than we thought

Ready for the test run

This is what is going to......

Keep us from running into the crowd. Hmmmmmmmm

This thing is BIG!

Ended up welding the handles........

To the crank.

Getting close.

Changed the seating. Put on the "oars" and fixed the tires. The road test next.

Build day!

Take me to your leader!