OK, so now I have officially been a blogger for 6 weeks. A bit unreal if you ask me. Erik Falk Hansen, a blogger! Who would have thought? One thing is for certain, I genuinely appreciate all the positive feedback I have received with regards to my blog and would like to pass on my sincere thanks to those 10 000+ that have visited my blog during the last 6 weeks. I hope I have managed to provoke, engage or motivate you (perhaps all three) and trust that you will continue to read my posts going into 2015. One thing is for sure; I will continue to provoke, motivate and engage.


ekspertFor those of us 10 years old or above, it is relatively obvious that being able to learn from the best is something we can all benefit from. Many of us recruiters have a tendency to profile ourselves in various media with tips and hints that are as simple as tying your own shoelaces. Perhaps “learning from the best” therefore is something that one of my Norwegian counterparts could bring up with one of the leading newspapers in 2015. It would fit in well with all the other obvious crap they come with. Can you imagine the header: “Always learn from the best” says recruiting expert and talent manager Mr Know-It-All. Joking aside, I have also decided to learn from the best in terms of blogging and when the best bloggers claim that one should always do an end of year summary on a blog, well then I simply have do to so. Why, I am not quite sure, but here is my end of year summary.

Whether many people will read this post or not I am not quite sure. I mean, who in the run up to Christmas will have time to read a summary such as this in between baking cakes, basting the Turkey and Home Alone one, two and three (Yes there is actually a third version but without that druggy). If you do have time to read this then I very much appreciate it and if you don’t, then you are probably moving the mouse curser up towards the red cross in the corner of your browser as we speak and time for me to wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year. Just remember, the turkey needs basting every 20 minutes and should rest for as long as it is cooked.

The reason I decided to start a blog was mainly in order to put myself in a position to highlight the problems that the recruitment industry is experiencing here in Norway. I have been incredibly proud to be a part of the recruitment industry for the last 11 years or so, but the “level of proudness” decreases for every day that goes by. Having had the opportunity to meet with hundreds of HR Managers, Senior Managers, industry colleagues and candidates during 2014, the message have been pretty clear: We are fed up with stuck up, aggressive and over the top professional recruiters. They think they are gods` gift to women (or men) and we have had enough. Feedback of this nature is of course rather worrying and I felt it was time for someone to have the guts to bring the debate alive and stress to the industry that it is time to make some significant changes.
ChampagneLast week I had the pleasure to meet an industry colleague of mine. Well, I wouldn`t call it pleasure and ideally not refer to this person as a colleague either, but out of respect to him, let`s assume it was a pleasurable meeting. This person was like many other recruiters here in Norway; full of himself and arrogant. Whether he was a part of the well-established “Recruitment Mafia” I am not sure, but either way, he made it clear that the recruitment industry had nothing to gain from people. Yes, that’s right. In his opinion there was not benefit in questioning the industry`s practises and ethics nor explain about the dirty tricks many head hunters have up their sleeves. There was a couple of fundamental issues with what this person had to say and I tried to explain this to him while he was sipping on his 7thglass of Dom Perignon of the evening.

  1. I have not in any way or form talked down any specific recruiters within the industry. My sole focus has been on the industry as a whole and as to how we can and need to improve.
  2. If those people who have dealings with recruiters are of the opinion that we are overpaid, ignorant arseholes well then we need to take a close look at ourselves and do something about it.
  3. We are not magicians and as a result there is no “rule” that states that someone from inside the industry cannot not give away the recipe of how the industry`s dirty tricks are put in place.
  4. Recruiters work with people this have a responsibility on their behalf. Let’s act in this manner too.

Having raised these fundamental issues with the person I was hoping for a comeback (if you know me I don’t mind a bit of an argument), but I am sorry to say that he probably hadn’t listen to me at all. After all, he was too busy studying the bubbles in his glass. So be it I say

During the last 6 weeks, I have written about some true horror stories from within the recruitment industry here in Norway. We have met with UK recruiter Sebastian and his colleagues who clearly don’t give a damn about anyone or anything as long as they get things their way. We have seen how Sebastian and his gang have been more bothered about acting like they were a part of the Wolf of Wall Street as opposed to actually doing everything in their power to provide a useful service for their clients and candidates. We have also met the “Mafia Recruitment” crew here in Norway (the magicians) whom believe they are experts in everything from heart surgery to leadership development. It has been interesting, relevant and to many people incredibly shocking.

I can honestly say that more or less all feedback I have received have been positive. This is of course much appreciated and makes me think that my thoughts and comments are of relevance and interest. To those few (can count on one hand even if you have lost a finger) whom have not been too happy with my blog then I am sorry you feel this way. I am not out to hurt you or your company and it was actually not directed at you at all. Ironically, I can`t help think that considering you reacted in the manner you did, that you too have a few points on your recruitment driving license.

Christmas is finally here and as the clichés states, it is time to reflect. Most of us have a new-year resolution or two and I am intending to lose a few stones in 2015 and cut out the cigarettes. Having said that, there is something that is more important to me than the amount of fat on my belly and the few quid I spend on a pack of Marlboro a day: I want to become better at what I do and become a better human being. I genuinely enjoy the job I do and have been fortunate to work within the field of recruitment for 11 years now. At the same time, I too realise that there are many areas of improvement and I can therefore promise you the following: l too will take a good look at myself, acknowledge my weaknesses and work damn hard to become a better person and a better recruiter. I cannot wait!



One thought on “The Recruitment Santa says Merry Christmas

  1. At least Erik you have shown true honesty in how things stand, and that is well appreciated to us real professionals. With what is happening to the price of oil, and the way companies have already expressed their cutbacks, then just maybe the worst of the cowboys will disappear; and as I publicly commented in LinkedIn that lean times may hit sooner than everybody thought; then only the good will survive and bring the best to the fore!!! Have a real ‘Merry’ and a prosperous ‘Happy’ over there Erik, and in return I will have a few ‘Beers and Cheers’ over here in the UK.


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