I listened to the podcast on dealing with recruiters and I had a question.

Over the years, I've  been called by recruiters. Since I was not looking, I told them as such, and asked that they friend me on Linkedin. This way I could keep in touch. I keep in touch with about 3 of them, E-mailing them every once in a while, as well as two recruiters I knew in grad school. Since starting my job (5 years), I have not shared my resume with anyone of them.

When recruiters ask me for names of colleagues, I have always been afraid of giving names, for fear of ratting them out. I did once give the name of a colleague who I could tell was thinking of jumping, but told them it was under utter confidence. I would hate if he found out that I referred him (MT says find the source).

Well, in the last month, three of my colleagues, including this person, have submitted resignations (all started within 6 months of me). A few took packages last year. We work in pharmaceutical, all of us are PhDs, and all of us work in a very specialized field. The number of us left is in the low single digit; all of us are in our early/mid thirties and two are pregnant. Promotions have been frozen for several years, performance ratings have been cramped, and company is still experiencing bad news.

I like my job. I like the people I work with. I like my short commute. I like where my projects are going. I like my stable health insurance due to a not so healthy family. But I do feel a little frustrated at the lack of recognition and the way management is rush-rush-rush; and never getting credit for the background planning that allows their rush-rush-rush attitude to succeed and not fail. 

If I call recruiters who I've known, what should I say? Should I give them my resume if they ask for it? The ones I've talked to in the last year have said they know a lot of people like myself who are frustrated, and have encouraged me to consider moving to get more responsibility. I revise my resume every 6 months as MT says, and did so this past weekend.

Mark's picture
Admin Role Badge

How can we know whether the comfortable pros of your existing role outweigh the perhaps more risky and perhaps more beneficial pros of a new job?

You have good recruiter relationships. If you trust them, let them know you're willing to consider the right opportunity, and cautiously weigh what they present.

This is how it's done.


Sent from seat 6b, aa flight aa753, lga-DFW.

TNoxtort's picture

I just wanted to share what happened when I contacted three recruiters.

I met the first one more than 5 years ago when I was in graduate school. She seemed to really understand my abilities and introduced me to many people, several of which introduced me to others and provided great advice. Back then, I made a web diagram of my network, and a lot of people were a result of her (I even gave a presentation about networking to our graduate school). When I spoke to her this week as she was driving, it was similar. I told her about my work and she noticed positive things about me that I did not realize. Namely, my persuasion skills that I finally got approval to spend money on some expensive. novel, innovative studies that I've been pushing for 1.5 years with 2 different bosses, 2 different boss's bosses, and being acquired (3 different CEOs). Like five years ago, she offered to introduce me to two people, who are much more experienced in a similar field as me. We also talked about my retired boss turned mentor, and she interrupted me and said, "He's the one that hired you, at a higher than entry level position, right?" I was impressed she remembered that!. In the end though, she said I should definitely talk to her contacts, but felt I was better to stay put because my projects are going forward. 

I have known the second recruiter for a few years. He sent an E-mail in reply to my phone message because he was out of the office. He seemed to know about the movement at my company, but he had also heard that I was probably in a good spot. I replied with brief summary, and we may touch base by phone next week.

The third recruiter I've only known for 6 months. She called me lots about an opportunity she had 6 months. While it was at a higher level, and required my pharmaceutical skills, the organization is in the "defense" business not "healing people" business. For that reason, and the relocation, I declined. When their first candidate fell through, she again called a lot, and we had lots of conversations, but I again declined. When I called her this week, she sort of made the point that they work on a retained basis and she didn't have anything right now, but would keep in touch. The note to self I made was that she did not seem as interested in relationship building, just dealing with her needs.

So at my very large company, we have a reporting structure, but we also have ranks, almost as many as the military. Entry level PhD would be a 2nd Lt, department head would be a Colonel or 1 star, VP a 2 star, and CEO would be 5 star. Because of how  I interviewed, my retired boss hired me at the higher 1st Lt, which I still am at. So, perhaps a result of so many people leaving, suddenly after several years of almost no promotions, several people got promoted in rank: a few from 2nd Lt to 1st Lt, and one more experienced and on more visible projects than me from 1st Lt. to Captain. All the line managers in the Captain - Major range got promoted too. I'm not bothered by not getting a promotion, but more by the re-active nature. I'm a pro-active person, and always get nervous when people choose being reactive over being proactive. Also, the few folks who are leaving shared a lot of anger with me: that they were leads on projects that now you see commercials on TV for, yet they got average ratings and no promotions, while their bosses got promoted.

They also expressed frustration with the rush-rush mentality by bosses. What I mean is best said by Mark about high D's, they can do a great job taking the first hill, but no one wants to work for them to take future hills. I find this a lot too, where us C's, and even more people oriented C's,take the heat from the D's, but don't pass it on to our partners / external collaborators, so that way the project is done correctly, though not necessarily as fast the D's want it. My experience in this area of pharmaceuticals is that when things are not done correctly, you find out much later when you've already invested more money.

So for me, I think I'm going to stay put, but continue to reach out to my network. And while some of the other line managers in my department are getting on my nerves (in my department, line managers frequently make requests to directs who report to others), I just have to bit my lip and smile, and continue to make sure I'm doing work that can hopefully be listed on my resume.