I replied directly to Charlie O'Donnell's post a week ago. Charlie has successfully raised some money behind a very solid concept and is blogging his way through his experience http://blog.path101.com . I don't see his rant on the company blog but you can find a link to it on his personal blog here: http://www.thisisgoingtobebig.com/2008/02/open-letter-to.html
Charlie is bothered that salepeople are soliciting his business and not offerring him "freebie" incentives. Charlie has strong opinions on a lot of subjects.
You don't need to be a salesperson or a recruiter to appreciate what it takes to do either successfully. I wonder if Charlie has ever sold anything? I did not ask.
"I'm busy right now. Really busy. I'm running a company that's trying to get product out the door. You want me to make time for you, but what have you done for me? Clearly, you're reading blogs enough to notice when people raise money, but you're not actually reading them for content. You seem to have missed the new business model: provide as much value as possible and demand less."
Charlie, we the salespeople, recruiters, insurance professionals, lawyers, accountants, etc... We provide as much value and service as possible so that we can justify our fees. Isn't that the essence of capitalism? You can find your own executives and write your own contracts for free if you feel it's the best use of your time.
"...Talk to us how we talk to our community... in an open and interactive way. And how about throwing me a freebie? What's the lifetime value of a recruiting client that runs a successful business? What's your margins? I'm surprised that recruiters don't ever offer heavily discounted or free referrals because if they found someone good for me, I'd be convinced of their value and probably use them again and again later on... and probably also make lots of referrals. Right now, I'm still convinced I can find people on my own, so show me someone I would have never ever found."
Good recruiters are looking to develop strategic relationships with a handful of clients so we can get paid. Throw you a "freebie"? We work for our money - nobody is giving it to us in the hope of a payday down the road. We (speaking for all us) look out for our clients, provide a service and value. We avoid clients who don't have the experience to appreciate us because they waste our time and time is the only real asset we have. Contingent recruiters are not asking for your hard earned money unless we are successful. That sounds like a fair value proposition. Don't worry about our margins. If we can help you achieve your goals before you run out of money then our margins are affordable and have value.
If you are trying to grow a company you can't quantify or overvalue the contributions your vendors can make. You will need good ones that don't waste your time. They will have skill, desire, hustle, chemistry and competence. Successful business owners and managers usually recognize that... You very often get what you pay for.