Skip to main content

If you spend any amount of time on LinkedIn, you’ll see that Recruitment Consultants are almost universally disliked. Recently I’ve spent a bit of time dealing with other industries who are also perceived as being awful. Here’s my ratings:

Real Estate Agents

I’ve just sold and bought a house, so this one is fresh. Recruiters are often put in the same category as real estate agents, but I think they’re a slightly different breed. Real Estate Agents typically work on a commission-only basis, and commission-only brings out the very worst in people. For this reason , they are almost always worse than recruiters. Couple this with the fact that they still insist on wearing ties, and their level of sycophancy is only bettered by the obsequious behaviour of Saddam Hussein’s Republican Guard, and you have some of the worst people you can ever meet. However, the person who sold my house was excellent, and actually quite a good laugh. The person I bought my house from was awful and had a history of fraud. So, like recruitment, a mixed bag.

Awfulness rating: Russian roulette, 1 in 6 is a winner. 7/10

Customer Services for major airlines

I was up until 1am with Malaysia Airlines last night after they took $2,300 off my credit card for a flight, then cancelled my booking due to a systems error, to then tried to charge me $3,800 for the same flight. Why book with Malaysia Airlines you may ask? Trust me, I’ve had just as bad experiences with Air New Zealand, who, quite frankly, make me want to puke. The message is clear with all airlines: NEVER try and call them. Like the Somme, it becomes a battle of attrition, with them hoping that if they put you on hold long enough, you’ll eventually retreat into Belgium. Last night, I did not retreat and eventually took Paris. Before we get too enraged however, it was quite clear last night that the underpaid, undertrained, animatronic was just a product of the greed of all major airlines. Their systems don’t work, and their bosses don’t care. They are the messenger who gets shot.

Awfulness rating: Your toddler scribbling on your new wallpaper. 2/10


If you want to be a politician, you should automatically be excluded from being a politician. Case in point: David f*cking Seymour. We have a truly loathsome bunch running New Zealand, but this is the case the world over. The US has a man who sadly yet obviously no longer has his faculties, and yet won’t admit it. And he will be followed by a man who may just be the worst human being alive. And the UK has a succession of snivelling, power hungry, public schoolboys and girl, who despise the working classes. Sadly, if any politician tries to speak like a normal person, or has fair and reasonable views, they seem to always be the runner-up. If you’re thinking about getting into politics, take a long hard look in the mirror and ask yourself; “Am I a see you next Tuesday?” The answer is probably yes.

Awfulness ratings: Tramp’s foreskin. 10/10

Car Salesman

Another profession recruiters are often compared to, especially in the blue collar space. To be frank, I’m not sure what all the fuss is about. I used to sell new cars, and there’s not really much dodgy stuff you could do. And trust me, I tried. The car is made by someone overseas, the price is pretty much predetermined, and they all have 5 year warranties. You just had to be as sycophantic as a real estate agent. The real comparison is with the non-dealership used car yards. These admittedly vary in quality. However, with modern cars mostly running on batteries, if there’s something wrong with a second hand vehicle, there’s a good chance that no one realises it’s f*cked until the battery explodes in a kid’s face.

Awfulness rating: It’s just a tin can to sit in on the harbour bridge. Get over it. 3/10

Agency Recruitment Consultants

They never call candidates back. They headhunt from clients. They over-promise to candidates. They underdeliver to clients. Yep, at times all of the above. They also get people big pay rises, and find people to do important jobs quicker than anyone else. From a candiate perspective, there is one factor which is largely misunderstood. The candidate is not the client. You are the product. As brutal as it sounds, from a commercial perspective, you are the can of baked beans. It is the client who is putting you on their toast. The recruiter’s primary goal is to keep the client happy as it is them who pays the bills. And when clients get a bad experience, this may be a lousy consultant, or you might be a lousy client. Similar to real estate, there is a mixed bag of recruiters. Some are excellent who care for all parties, and some just want to make a quick buck.

Awfulness rating: Like sex in a psychiatric ward: could be the best ever, could be hugely regrettable. 5/10


I’ve been using these recently, but admittedly, not for anything racy. I was however on a jury at the end of last year, and that was great fun. Lawyers get a hard time because they’re 1) expensive, 2) a pain in the arse, and 3) represent your ex-wife, or when it comes to criminal law, defend the indefensible. In my experience of dealing with lawyers (and I bet yours also, even if you don’t know it), they mostly have an incredibly boring and tedious job. Even with criminal law with big theatrical trials, it’s mostly scouring over documents. And when it comes to defending kiddy fiddlers, we should be thankful that we live in a world where everyone has the right to a defence. If you fancy it the other way, North Korea is lovely this time of year.

Awfulness rating: Like period knickers. Sometimes necessary, and more boring than offensive. 3/10

Internal Recruitment Consultants

Internal Recruiters don’t seem to get the individual vitriol from candidates that agency recruiters do, but this is largely because they hide anonymously behind Snaphire. Candidates say “Fletchers never called back”, so they dodge a personal bullet here. Instead, it is agency recruiters who take aim at their internal counterparts. A bigger c0ck-blocker than a sober mate, internal recruiters are perceived to be the roadblock that every agency recruiter tries to circumnavigate. There is truth in this. As they are not typically rewarded financially per hire, there is also a perception that they don’t really care, and some don’t. For some internal recruiters, the money is OK, it fits in with the kids, and there’s no sales target. This is not an existence for me, but it’s pretty beige on the awfulness scale.

Awfulness rating: A wet weekend in Hobsonville Point. 4/10

Anyway, back to more serious topics next week. Probably.

Have a good weekend.