Things I've learned from good headhunters

/ / first impressions, voicemail

I was just sharing this experience in a recruiter/sourcing training session I was doing for a health care client this past week.

I'm working in my home office one night, around 9:30pm. And the phone rings on my business line. I pick it up, and I get a surprised, "Hello...John?" (He clearly wasn't expecting me to pick up the phone.)

He introduced himself as a recruiter/headhunter. I said something like, "Do you know that it's 9:30pm here in Seattle?"

He did. "I was expecting to get your voicemail...to be honest, you caught me off guard."

Well, he goes on to tell me - and I LOVE THIS - that he was calling to pitch a Recruiting Director job to me, but - with a name like Vlastelica - he didn't want to butcher it when he called me the next day. So, he was hoping to get my voicemail to hear my pronunciation.

What a proactive, respectful, smart guy!

Now, I'm used to getting my name butchered, so I wouldn't necessarily hold it against someone if they pronounced it wrong. But, wouldn't you be impressed if someone invested that little extra effort to make a great first impression?

(It's pronounced Vla-sta-lee-ka, by the way. When I'm really desperate for content someday, I'll share with you the 3 most absurd spellings/pronunciations I've ever heard of my last name.)