EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

I never cease to be amazed at the extremes job seekers go to hide. It is almost as if they would prefer NOT being selected for a job interview.

Call me silly, but I make every attempt to make it easy for others to contact me. I know it isn’t the default, but I have even been known to use an outgoing signature on REPLIES to emails sent to me. You see, I have this stupid idea that perhaps you don’t know how to reach me. And, much as I dread human contact, it seems to be the only way to make a living.

My outgoing signature (yes, I am going to beat that drum again) contains my “greeting to use,” my given name, my physical address (What if you wanted to send me a gift? You can’t email it or leave it as a phone message.), my email address, and ALL of the phone numbers you might want in the order I would like you to call them. Actually, the physical address is so you will know my time zone.

And again, call me silly, but when I call someone I actually repeat my name at least twice and my phone number twice when I leave a message. When I retire, one of my comedy routines will include the fact that: 1. People with common names are unaware they have a common name, and 2. People with hard to spell names are unaware that you couldn’t possibly write their name down except phonetically.

At this point in my life, I actually know a lot of people with the same first AND last names. And, keeping in mind that my last name is Bud, please understand that I have difficulty with any last name longer than 3 letters. You honestly are better off spelling your last name if you are leaving me a message. Consider that not everyone has a secret decoder ring connected to a dynamically searchable database. (I am indeed one of the lucky few.)

So, now that I have beaten the “dead horse” of outgoing email signatures for the umpteenth time, please know that I am considering no longer answering any emails I get that don’t have one. This should cut my correspondence to 20% of what it is now. All I will need going forward is my delete key. (I am considering having it reinforced so I don’t wear it out.)

Let us turn our attention now to resumes that lack a home address. Those who leave off a home address are terminally cute. May I ask if you are sleeping in a car? Do you think it is possible the recipient will be fooled into thinking you are a local candidate? Guess again. They are more likely to hit the delete key. In the category of “believe it or not,” I have seen home addresses left off when the individual WAS a local candidate. Yes, you can’t make this stuff up. I would point out to you that sometimes your phone number is a dead giveaway that you aren’t local.

Let us now assume I actually call you back. It is at this point the mystery continues. Sometimes I get the system message. I guess there wasn’t a training class that came with your phone. Or, again to be cute, the person doesn’t identify themselves but instead repeats their phone number. Can I be sure I wrote your number down correctly? It would be helpful if you would identify yourself. (Hey, I’m an insecure guy. If you don’t identify yourself, I won’t leave a message.)

Ah, yes, the fear of being contacting. I know it well. They say you can run but you can’t hide.

Well, I have to tell you that many of you out there are doing a very good job of proving this expression wrong.

Regards, Matt

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