Brian Rhea Brian Rhea

The Gratitude Perspective: Reevaluating Our Attitude Towards Recruiters

Every so often, my Twitter stream – and probably yours – will include some annoyed (or perversely-entertained) developer sharing a tale of sorrow and woe. The tragedy? They’ve been spammed by a recruiter. Horror!


Are many technical recruiters clueless*?


Are you glad you have your job and not theirs?

Also yes?

Then try gratefulness as a response instead of complaining/showboating to Twitter.

Do you make over $60,000?

Yes? Then you’re in the top 0.19% richest people in the world.

No? Then respond to the recruiter!

Either way, be grateful that while millions upon millions of people are looking for work (and in many parts of the world, actual fucking water), you find yourself in the midst of a thriving industry at a point in time when your skills are valuable and demand outweighs supply.

That will not always be the case.

When the tide turns and you find yourself knocking on doors, brushing up your resume, and sending custom cover letters to position your background as remotely relevant in the brave new world, you’ll remember rolling your eyes at another email from yet another clueless recruiter and you may think, “What an asshole.”

* Note: I love @dhh. I read everything he writes, I watch every talk he posts, and I agree with almost all of it. I’m not exaggerating when I say that I would place him among my top 10 most influential authors. What I have never agreed with him on is how hard he is (very publicly) on recruiters.

Yes, it is comical that recruiters approach him for mid-level Rails positions considering that he, you know, invented it. But publicly mocking and embarrassing an actual human being who wasn’t good at their job (when nobody was actually harmed) is uncalled for.

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