Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Saturday, November 19, 2005

The Recruiter's Pitch:
How to Lie As If You Believe It

I've been on the recruiting committee many times, off and on, over the 58 years that I have taught at The University of Western Ontario. Our initial interviews with candidates are typically held during large conventions in early January. There are several truths about those initial interviews that I wish to share with all of you.
  1. When the recruiter starts telling you about the university and the city after only 10 or 15 minutes, it is usually because they don't want to know any more about you. You will not be short-listed.
  2. Recruiters are not going to tell you the bad things about their university and city. And during the initial interview, it is not wise to ask about them.

Here is a lengthy excerpt from a hilarious posting by Anonymous Lawyer about recruiting in legal profession. It sounds just like what goes on in economics.

I can do the whole pitch with half my brain figuring out how to manipulate associates into doing my dry cleaning. Our mentoring program is the best in its class. Our lecture series has won awards. We’ll teach you everything you need to know. You won’t be flying solo. We have a culture of collaboration. We have a commitment to cooperation. We have an open-door policy. You advance at your own pace. We give you as much responsibility as you can handle. There is no face time. You set your own hours. We treat you like the professional you are. We work hard, but we play hard.

It’s all about the people. We have great people. The people here are like nowhere else. You’ll do good work everywhere, but it’s the people that make the difference. You will love the people here.

We’re a leading full-service international law firm with a proven track record for meeting the needs of our clients. Our clients come first. They rely on us for top-notch service. You won’t find a place with more interesting cases or more challenging work. Our clients are on the front pages of newspapers worldwide. Our work is unparalleled. Our practice is global. Our commitment to excellence is clear. Across all of our practice groups, what ties the firm together is our pursuit of excellence. We’re on the cutting-edge. We serve our clients domestically, and around the world. We have a strong presence in all of the major financial centers. Leaders in business count on us. Our success speaks for itself. Our list of awards is substantial and impressive.

We place a premium on collegiality. We strive to maintain an informal working atmosphere. We are committed to diversity. We treat each other with dignity and respect. We know what really matters in life. Our benefit package is state of the industry. We provide cars home if you’re working late. We provide meals. We provide coffee. We provide a brand-new laptop. Our information technology services are top-notch. Our word processing center is open twenty-four hours a day. Our client services department is there to meet your every need. Our support staff is magnificent.

The atmosphere of small firm combined with the resources of a large firm. The congeniality of a small firm combined with the diversity of a large firm. The one-on-one contact you find in a small firm combined with the kinds of cases you can only get at a large firm. It’s the best of both worlds. It’s the best of all worlds. It’s the best, according to a recent survey. It’s never been better. We’re growing at an unbelievable pace. We have a five-year plan. We have a ten-year plan. Our finances are strong. Our client base is stronger than it’s ever been. Our partnership is among the strongest in the industry. We just bought another floor in the building. The views are amazing. The artwork is unbelievable. The bathrooms are sparkling. We’re in the best part of the city. There’s so much to see. There are so many things to do. There are so many ways to relax.

The people make all the difference. You’ve never seen such a collection of people. I’m constantly amazed by the people here. The people here are unbelievable. We strive to find the best and the brightest people we can. Our people are truly special. It sounds like a cliché, but I promise, you will love the people here, you really will.

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