The difference between needy and hungry


What’s the difference between Calamari and squid?  Five bucks and branding! 

In other words, Calamari is widely more appealing (even to squeamish kids) than squid because of the image associated with it (crispy, delicious, etc.).  When it comes to getting your next job or business partner, you must be appealing and desirable to land your terms. 

Needy people are like squid, hungry talent is like Calamari. 

It’s easy to feel needy these days: no money, no market, no budget, lack! If you are out of a job, and living on credit cards or draining the savings, you need a job right away.  The trick is, not to lead with the need during interviews.  I’ve worked a lot with staffing professionals and recruiters, and they all agree on one thing: The best recruit is a passive job seeker with high goals.  The worst recruit is an active job seeker with a short time to solve a problem.  Why? 
The active job seeker will likely bring negative energy into the group once the honeymoon or rescued-from-the-pound period is over.  The active job seeker is, usually, active for a reason: He failed at his last job.  At least, that’s the attitude of the recruiter.  The active job seeker might bring the funk her last company had into your group.  

On the other hand, the passive job seeker is already fulfilled and happy.  He is kicking butt at his job and likely has high self-esteem.  Your job, as a recruiter, is to woo him into a bigger opportunity where he’ll be more successful.  If you land him, it is a win because you just picked a winner.  He’ll likely bring the best of his company’s culture into your group. 

Same goes with vendor partners.  Do you really want to hire a contractor that’s staving off missing payroll?  That is likely to be a weird emotional journey for you, as the vendor copes with daily fiscal survival as they attempt to perform for you.  They’ll come back over and over again for more cash.  Worst of all, they are on the brink of belly up and who’s to say your money can’t save them? 
No, you want to do business with a company thriving during the downturn, with an appetite for excellence.  No matter how successful they are, they are still hungry to do more and grow.  That contractor will bring positive vibes to work and will think about the relationship — and not just the account balance, when considering issues of quality. 

What does this mean if you are looking for work or contracts?  Never let them see you sweat.  Make sure you are never leading with the need and instead talking about how much you want to learn from this time and grow from it.