Men I love and the tenuous link to recruitment... part one


Whilst he is 50 he still retains his rugged looks, the charm, that smile... I first fell in love with George Clooney last year... It was less of a physical thing.  Don't get me wrong he is a good looking man but not really my type. So it was less about George and more about the character he was playing in the film up in the air.   I know i've mentioned this in a post before... but many aspects of the file ring true with my life... and how many films do you know centre around HR issues and mass reductions of workforces?

In the film he plays a late 40's good looking corporate suit armed with blackberry, laptop and a 'corporate' view of his world.   He travels the length and breadth of the US 'letting go' people that worked for large corporate organisations.  In the main the used George because they were too scared, too incapable or just too lazy to do it themselves.

My love for him and specifically his character lies in the fact that unlike many of my other favourite films it shows part of the life I have and part of the life that a part of me desperately wants.  I am lucky in that I have some of what Mr.Clooney's character has.  I travel the length and breadth of the UK (occasionally mainland europe but not enough) hiring people not firing people... I have the corporate trappings (suit, blackberry and laptop) but retain a little bit of me (iphone, sarcasm and banksy coaster)... but I am envious and a a little bit of envy is not a good thing...

Firstly, he flies... like him I love flying, it's clean and clinical (relative to trains), there is process and on the the better airlines lounges, drinks and snacks... In the film he jets into a city, gets to Hertz and drives off having clocked up frequent flyer miles, hire car loyalty points before checking into a loyalty laden hotel.  My life is only a part of what he does.  My life is the train.  In the vast number of journey's my life is specifically virgin trains and it is making me miserable.  To be fair to virgin trains it is not just them at the root of the unhappiness...but that is another post altogether...

You see I travel an inordinate amount on a train.   In the main it's so that I can do other things other than just drive, so that I can work or type but it's not always that satisfying.  This post has been written in part on a train at 21.15 heading south and worse still 06.35 heading south... i'm a little nocturnal... On board are some suits, some students and up until his arrest at stoke a chap with no ticket, money or comprehension that he wasn't going to be let off.  In addition is an egg sandwich, a tuna sandwich and a grab bag size packet of ready salted crisps.

This is not what I signed up for.

In what is typical of my huge lumbering links between life and recruitment I am not George Clooney but that isn't my fault.  You see George or rather his character is at what is seen as the tough coal face.

It's where the hard men (and women) hang out.  In their business they sack, make redundant, reduce, dispose or whatever the right phrase is and that is seen as hard and tough.  I have done that.  I have let people go, sometimes happily, sometimes with immense remorse that we should have done more but let them go I did before getting back on with my day job.  For me though the tough job is not letting people go it's about bringing them in...

Letting go is simple. There is a task to be done and as long as it is done professionally, with dignity and some humanity it can be done quickly and without fuss. Most importantly there is closure, a finite date when the the relationship ends and neither side has to think about ever talking to each other again.

Conversely think about acquiring talent.  We have to wine, dine, entertain over and over.  We need them to feel that they are 'the one' and that our time together is 'special' even though  we may be having dozens of special relationships at any one time.  Once we've tempted them into talk we then have to assess the quality of the fit, how able they are, their cultural empathy and whether we can afford to take it to the next level.

So no, George or rather his character had it easy and yet is is me on a virgin train somewhere north of watford, south of milton keynes not clocking up airmiles or being served a cheeky glass of Sancerre.


For more about Martin click here. To get in touch click here and to follow on twitter @MDangerfield.

DANGERFIELD will never be Accenture, but we can deliver Accenture like projects in terms of scale and global reach.  We can create new ways to recruit putting humanity into a.i. developing large-scale hiring plans anywhere in the world, delivered with confidence, passion and pride.

Martin Dangerfield has a background in executive search and selection, headhunting and senior level recruitment combined with people and business management experiences.  The focus has always been on the IT services, technology and management consultancy sectors on a permanent and interim basis where he has developed a personal portfolio that covers areas such as EVP, social recruitment and the successful creation of talent pools as well the management and leadership of corporate talent acquisition teams.

Currently working across Europe with high growth, high tech organisations to develop effective blended onshore/offshore recruitment models, covering full commercial engagement, transition and ongoing delivery management.

Martin is an avid blogger, writer, public speaker and traveller of trains across the UK and available for work on a global basis.