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Crazy Recruiting Stories… in the Recruiters’ Own Words

by | Jan 7, 2011 | Recruiter Training, Top Echelon Blog

We recently announced the winner of our “Craziest Recruiting Story of 2010” content on “Top Echelon TV.”  The winner was Top Echelon Network Preferred Member recruiter Coleen Balogh-Walther of The Provident Search Group, Inc.  .)

The reason we chose Coleen’s story is that it met the number-one criteria associated with the contest, the fact that it teetered on the edge of believability.  We found it difficult to believe that a candidate would actually do this, especially after advancing through the various stages of the interview process to the final interview.  Not only that, the candidate was interviewing for the position of Employee Relations Manager.  The irony is obvious.

Anyway, we’d like to thank everybody who submitted a crazy recruiting story.  They were all highly entertaining and received ample consideration by Top Echelon officials.  Although there can be only one winner, we appreciate your participation in our contest, and don’t be surprised if you see your story in a future blog post or “Top Echelon TV” episode.

While Membership Development Coordinator Drea Codispoti and I relayed Coleen’s story on “TV” this past week, we’d also like to present her story as she told it to us—in her own words, so to speak.


“I had a candidate interviewing for an Employee Relations Manager (Human Resources) position.  He had made it through several stages of the interview process and was interviewing with the General Manager and two Assistant General Managers, and throughout the interview, he repeatedly used the f-word!  Needless to say, they were offended and did not hire him.

“When I spoke to the candidate and told him WHY he was not getting the offer, his response was that he was not using the word to be offensive, but he was using it for effect.  I told him that if the effect was to NOT get the job, he succeeded!”

However, Coleen’s story wasn’t the only one that we mentioned on “Top Echelon TV.”  We also bestowed honorable mention status on a story that didn’t occur in 2010, but was so outrageous that we felt we had to include it.  That story was submitted by Joe Noto of the Regency Search Group.  Once again, his story is below, told in his own words.

“A candidate I placed did not show up to start work as a General Manager of Mexican Operations in Juarez, Mexico.  It was four days before he contacted the client and me because he had been abducted by Mexican drug cartel/gang members and held captive.

“They stole his laptop, credit cards, cell phone and other personal items and threatened to kill his family.  They then cleaned out his bank accounts and later released him.  As unbelievable as all this is, it really happened, and the most unbelievable part is he still took the job, starting a couple of weeks later.”


Here’s the really good news: we had so much fun with this contest and enjoyed the submissions so much that we’d like you to send us your craziest recruiting stories of all-time.  Throughout 2011, we’re going to periodically highlight these stories in the Recruiter Training Blog, as well as on “Top Echelon TV.”  Remember, you can remain anonymous, if you’d like, but if not, we’ll mention your name and also the name of your firm.

We’ve already received a ton of crazy stories . . . and I know you have one, too.  How could you not?  You’re a recruiter!  You work with people all day long.  Craziness comes standard.  So don’t be greedy.  Share the stories by emailing them to

To paraphrase Mel Blanc, you shouldn’t take recruiting too seriously.  You’ll never get out of it alive.

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