Thursday, May 13, 2010

Adventures in Recruiting: Part I: The Alias

The other day I had a really funny experience which I posted on Facebook.  It got so much response I thought I would post it here for my readers to enjoy.

I received a resume through my website.  I opened the email, read the cover letter and then opened the attached resume.  I instantly got confused.  The name on the resume, while similar to the one on the email, was not the same.  I emailed the candidate telling him that I was confused.

To be clear (and I am making up the name to protect the guilty), the email name was Joseph Smith.  The name on his resume was: Steven Joseph.  I asked for an explanation.

Before you read the punch line, I have to tell you that in all my years of recruiting, this is a first.  Here is his verbatim email to me:

"Name is [Joseph Steven Smith] - when i [sic] initially put this resume together I was freaked out about having my name out there as looking for a job, since this industry is quite small and incestuous!"

Think about this for a while. 

I have heard of people changing their resumes:  They change their college degrees (I had a candidate once change his college - and he got caught), I have seen people change employment dates, I have even seen people change the accounts that they worked on.  But I have never seen someone change their name.

Would love your comments.


  1. This brings to mind your blog about people being afraid and reinforces the crazy things they do because of fear.

  2. Pass - he doesn't get the job. Lack of detail orientation. To be thorough he should have used a pseudonym on his email, too!

  3. Actually a few creative people have changed names a few times. It was never for a good reason.

  4. Shows a classic case of bad judgement on the part of the Steven er Joseph er Smith oh whatever. What other dumb things would this idiot do on my business?

  5. Well since he knows the ad community is small and incestuous why use a pseudonym name. Bad strategy in my humble opinion

  6. Better yet he should have called himself Ann O'Neemus

  7. noelle FernandesMay 13, 2010 at 1:28 PM

    WOW! was this for an account management position?

  8. These days, anything is possible. People really do not think we (HR) do our jobs... sad truth!


I would welcome your comments, suggestions or anything you would like to share with me or my readers.

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