Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Christmas thoughts

On a freezing, snowy day here in Essex my thoughts have wandered to where I would rather be and, the answer, of course, is in fabulous Las Vegas surrounded by beautiful people - well, my buddys JP and Angus anyway - sipping a cold drink at the awesome Voodoo Lounge (pictured) before heading to the Bellagio for a spot of poker.

If not Vegas then maybe in one of the bars lining Las Ramblas in Barcelona watching the world go by....Instead, on Saturday afternoon I found myself on the outskirts of Reading watching the Mighty Leeds United playing out the most tedious 0-0 draw in arctic conditions - not quite living the dream!

I know it is a cliche but here in England it is odd how everything stops when there is bad weather.  All three interviews I had scheduled for today have been cancelled which is frustrating as we are rapidly approaching that time of year when recruitment slows right down (in my sectors) for a wide variety of reasons.  Incidentally, last year I wrote a short article on when is the best time to look for a new job which can be found here: http://www.appointments-uk.co.uk/articleMarch2009.php

I am particularly irritated by these cancellations today as ideally I would like these deals finalised before the holidays begin as it really is a battle to schedule meetings in December.  I am never quite sure why this is the case: is it really because people mentally switch off and move into party mode? 

In recruitment there is a saying that 'time kills deals' due to the two sides courting each other cooling off or other complicating factors arising - for example, here in the UK a number of people I know who were offered Computer Forensic roles in the Public Sector earlier this year had these posts withdrawn following the Public Sector cuts introduced in George Osborne's budget.  A more extreme example is my Venture Capitalist friend who lost all his prospective deals immediately after the terrible events of 11 September 2001.

The Christmas period can also have some very odd effects on jobseekers.  I recall one Fraud Investigator who was at final interview stage for a Big Four Company and was incredibly excited about the opportunity before Christmas.   After spending the holiday with her rather dull husband (seriously, half an hour with this guy makes a Nick Clegg speech look strangely exciting) she finally decided to divorce and so cancelled all her plans to change jobs.

Finally, a note of humour (well, arguably - it made me chuckle anyway) on this miserable evening.  Did you hear the joke about what Audley Harrison and Michael Jackson had in common?  They both wore a glove for no apparent reason....

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