Have Your Problem Employee Removed and Get a T-Shirt

What does it mean when a recruiter in Texas announces a line of recruiter fashion and another one in Santa Monica launches a website offering “management and employee removal services?”

That we are in the dog days of August? That we’ve been in the summer sun too long? That I’m being Punk’d?

Turns out the press releases about these ventures are for real.

The LeafBuilder clothing line is an assortment of T-shirts that you use to flaunt your recruiting prowess. The number of maple leafs on the shirts corresponds to your placements — and the price. The entry-level T with a single leaf (corresponding to between 1 and 1,999 candidate placements) is $21.95.

Make it into the agency ownership ranks and a seven leaf, long-sleeved version will set you back $293.95. Somewhere on the site there’s a product that will run you over $1,500.

Founder John Sudds (I’m not kidding about his last name, but you can understand why I thought I was being punked) insisted recruiters will spend the money and wear his stuff because of the pride in their accomplishments. “It gives recruiters something to shoot for,” he tells me during our conversation. “It gives the industry a sense of inspiration.”

After that, it was TalentHole, and that line about removal services, that inspired me to think of those  few people from my past life I wished I could have had removed. Permanently. If you catch my meaning.

So I was a little disappointed, though not unexpectedly so, to discover that TalentHole.com’s idea of removal really means outplacement. Its founder, an independent recruiter who wants me to call him Carlos, sees this project of his as something of a holy mission.

“There are so many bad employers now and they are asking employees to work their — I’ll use “behinds.” Carlos had a different noun — off, that I wanted to do something to help,” he says.

And then there are employees with attitudes that would scare away Atilla the Hun, but whose work quality is good enough to keep them from getting fired. “A person is a Talent Hole, when he or she makes everyone else miserable by the very nature of their actions and in-actions.” It says that right on the website.

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Tell TalentHole about them and maybe Carlos can help them find another job.

He works splits, fills reqs, sources candidates, and might just be able to facilitate the divorce in a way that is speedy and amicable.

If he earns a placement fee, great. He doesn’t charge otherwise.

But Carlos, I asked him, what recruiter wants your loser candidate with the bad attitude?

Reasonably enough, he explained that not every worker who wants out has an attitude problem. Many just don’t fit the company or the boss. “75 percent of the time,” he says, “that Talent Hole, somewhere else, is a super star.”

Maybe. Me, I’d ask questions if a Carlos from Santa Monica were to pitch me a candidate. On the other hand, if my boss is a Talent Hole, I’d at least be comforted to know I have a champion in Carlos at TalentHole.

John Zappe is the editor of TLNT.com and a contributing editor of ERE.net. John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.

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