Eric Hudson, Director of Talent Acquisition at DocuSign, joins Hiring University to discuss the state of an everchanging and at times confusing talent market. As an executive coach, Eric also provides best practices for your job search regardless of whether you are looking for a VP position or if it's your first job out of college!
"When you are looking for your next opportunity, get out there if you're not already out there, and network as much as you can because your network and your personal brand will be the most valuable to you in your search."
For more Hiring University episodes tune into your favorite podcast player or visit us at www.ursusinc.com
For more Hiring University episodes tune into your favorite podcast player or visit us at www.ursusinc.com
[00:00:00] Eric Hudson: What's
[00:00:00] Jon Beck: up everyone? Welcome to Hire University. It's John Beck, your host. Today we have with us Eric Hu, director of Talent Acquisition at DocuSign. Eric, what's up man? How are
[00:00:10] Eric Hudson: you? Time, how are you? Thank you for inviting me here. I'm looking forward to this.
[00:00:15] Jon Beck: Welcome to the show. It's great to have you. Eric, you've been doing this for a couple minutes and have seen some things along the way. But I'm always interested in when I talked to talent leaders, how did you get into this business? You were rolling tie down in Alabama and how'd you get into staffing and talent and, how'd you get to this point?
[00:00:30] Dave, give us a quick background of, , your career tr.
[00:00:33] Eric Hudson: Yeah, yeah, definitely. So I actually, like most people, fell backwards into this. I didn't say, Hey, I'm gonna major in recruiting or major in staffing. That that wasn't on the docket. I actually had a double major. I had a public relations major and a psychology major, and I really wanted to get into sports.
[00:00:53] I was obsessed with sports C L M to this day. , I had internships with some minor league baseball teams, Birmingham, Barrons, which is the, the White Sox affiliate aa, uh, did that for a year. And I also interned with, our athletics department at Alabama. So I got to see some intimate, cool stuff with the football program and basketball.
[00:01:12] So I was really into it. And I actually got, I was in the MBA program. I got accepted into the MBA program. along with a specialized sports management feature that they had with the executive mba. And it was two weeks before I was scheduled to start the class. So I had two weeks left before I could cancel or confirm my classes and I had to pay the university for my mba and someone from the athletic department went to work at a company called Tech Systems.
[00:01:42] And as. Yeah. Yeah. . Uh, but Tech Systems, was a Allegis group company, and they were hiring, and my friend from Alabama Marketing said, I think you'd be really good at this. And I, I was like, well, I've already got a plan. I, you know, I'm, I'm, I've already signed my lease in Tuscaloosa.
[00:02:05] I'm gonna be sticking around here for a. , but he said, well, why don't you just talk to him, so I did, and I talked to the internal recruiter and he had me really sold. And, and to be honest with you, I had a lot of student loans at the time too. So I, I was, I was living off beans in, in Ramen.
[00:02:20] So, um, it was a pretty compelling argument. And he had me interviewed for both tech systems and Aerotech. So I interviewed for both of them. I had 20 interviews. Wow. 20 interviews. 20 interviews. So they make you do, at least back then, they, they probably don't do this. I was gonna say that doesn't happen anymore.
[00:02:40] There's no way. But like they had me, like, it was almost, I went from one account manager's office to the next and it was like a 20 minute interview with each one of them. Yeah. So I was just flying around there. And then the next day I went to the other office and did the exact same thing. And the funny thing is, I actually didn't get the offer with the tech systems group and I got the offer with the Aerotech group.
[00:03:01] I don't know if it was, if I got an offer with both. how it, you know, wound up. But he called back and said, Hey, we're gonna offer you the Aerotech job. So I got the Aerotech job and I had to explain to my parents why I thought going to a recruiting firm was better. And so, uh, I, yeah, I accepted the offer and to be honest with you, it was, one of the most important choices of my life.
[00:03:24] I wouldn't have gotten to do everything that I've done. I'm sure I would've gone down a separate path. Who knows? While I love sports. I think I like this more. I think it's, a lot more potential. I've affected a lot of people's lives Yeah. Doing this and, to quickly go over it, right?
[00:03:38] I went to Aerotech. . And then I got called on by Amazon. , where I got to join Amazon at a very early juncture, very important part of my life because I spent nearly a decade there and I really got to advance very quickly, in a company that was really, at the time, this was 2012, right?
[00:03:56] So 20 20, 21 or 2011. So that was a big growth period, right? And that's to grow the company from 60,000 employees to around 1.6 million, which I think, wow. Never gonna happen again. No, you know, I, I just think that's, like, that journey was incredible.
[00:04:14] , by the time I left Amazon, I'd done a lot of great things. I launched our Singapore. Operations of recruiting. I launched the, the Australia operations for recruiting and, and I got to do a lot of a w s hiring with the n ssa, Homeland Security, CIA a, all that cool stuff. So, just to give you a perspective, I was, at the end of my tenure there, I was hiring, or my team was hiring, software engineers that had a top security clearance.
[00:04:41] So you're talking about needle and a haystack? Yeah. And then I, I also got to do executive. and in the executive recruiting world, I got a lot of interactions with some of the top executives, bay Area, Seattle. I really saw a different angle of recruiting there because you're dealing with, people are making 10 million plus, right?
[00:05:01] It was a really interesting pivot, but it also led to my side gig or my side, hustle that I, I do. where I became an executive coach, and I've been doing this now for almost two and a half years, where I will work with executives and help them achieve their career goals, help 'em with negotiation, help 'em with interviewing.
[00:05:19] Um, and that's been really impactful. And of course now I'm currently with DocuSign and I've been doing that for about a year and a half. So, . That's my background in nutshell how I got into recruiting. Yeah, you you
[00:05:32] Jon Beck: some good stops along the way for sure. And certainly the Amazon time will, it'll be hard pressed to be repeated.
[00:05:40] I do wanna come back to the differences, between the exec level of recruiting and maybe, lower level roles and, and I'm sure there's some consistencies. , or parallels regardless of the title or role. We'll come back to that. And, and I also just, I don't think it's a coincidence. I talk to a lot of people that, you know, say the same thing.
[00:06:00] They back their way into staffing or serendipitous, lot of former athletes. So, and I think the reason for that is just the appreciation of teamwork and, human connection, that you have as part of a. I don't think that's a coincidence. I can count myself as one of those as well too. I'll tell you a funny story as well.
[00:06:19] Short one. When I graduated, I, I too was a psychology major pre-med and didn't want to go to medical school after all that. And so I took one of these AP two tests, and then the, the primary job function that came up for me was, executive recruiter, and. I actually took some informational interviews at Porn Ferry and, and some of the other big firms and all of them said, , you're not the right, you're not the right guy for us.
[00:06:42] And turned me away. And here I am, however many years later doing it. It's kind of funny how the world comes full circle, um, Eric, you know, in the news right now, there's so many headlines and dare I call it noise that are. Conflicting and mixed messages, right?
[00:06:57] We had the great resignation and then the great hiring, now quiet, quitting and there's all just sorts of news of the market is as tight as it's ever been, but there's layoffs everywhere. How do you navigate through that? And obviously you have internal stakeholders to talk to as well as to candidates.
[00:07:14] How do you navigate through that? And I guess the bigger question I have, is it easier or harder today? To find talent with all the shuffling and noise that's gone over the last six months.
[00:07:25] Eric Hudson: So now they're calling it quiet hiring. Yeah, that's right. I dunno if you've
[00:07:29] Jon Beck: heard about that.
[00:07:29] Which I love, by the way. Cause I guess that's what we do now. We help you quiet hire, I don't know. Yeah,
[00:07:34] Eric Hudson: yeah. Well it's, it's funny because all these layoffs or loud layoffs, that's also what they're calling it. And you have all these layoffs and then you have all these companies still hiring. I mean, I.
[00:07:44] We're hiring a lot. Amazon's hiring a lot. All the big companies are still hiring. You can go to all their career pages. Yep. And they're still hiring, but I think they feel bad that they're hiring because they've had to do layoffs and other companies are laying off. So everyone's doing it, but they're also like, we still need to keep the lights on.
[00:08:00] We still need to grow, but we don't wanna get put into the bad limelight of what the press could spin on us. As far as like how to navigate it. I mean, there's two ways you can navigate it, right? There's the candidate side and there's the recruiting side of what we're in and what we're in.
[00:08:15] I mean, I think it's still a very competitive market for the candidate, and I do see a large uptick in applications in our ats, but it doesn't necessarily mean that it's the right person for the. . So I'm seeing a lot more candidates come through, but we still have to do a, our due diligence to make sure the bar is high and find candidates.
[00:08:42] Another thing too is just because they're laying off at, meta and Amazon and Google doesn't mean you can afford these folks, right? Like they're, they're all, I don't know if it's like they haven't come to reality or what, but they still have very high expectations with their compensation.
[00:08:59] and I there's the tools out there like blind and FYI levels and people are very aware of what the market is paying. So I think it's still very difficult to hire. And for us, , again, we have the recs that are open, but it's still just as difficult our time to fill has it substantially shrunk.
[00:09:17] I will say. Not, and this is not recruiting, but from a, an HR perspective or from a a talent management perspective, the talent is not moving as much as they ha they were. So the great resignation piece is over. The power has turned over to an employer. If anything, these layoffs have made the candidate more nervous or apprehensive to.
[00:09:45] because what I've seen is a lot of companies doing is, if you have someone who's been there for five months, they're usually on a chopping block versus somebody who's been there eight years. Yeah. And to be very transparent, my wife was caught up in that and she was laid off, but we were able to get her a job very quickly.
[00:10:01] Which brings me to my other point on the candidate side, a lot of people were like, Eric, how do I get a job now that I've just been laid off? Like, what do I do? And the first thing I say is, Try not to take the complete, just splat it against the wall approach, right? Spaghetti against the wall is, I've gotten a job before doing that.
[00:10:23] I know many people who've gotten jobs doing that, but it's almost like you're throwing a thousand darts, right? And getting one. So it's not exactly the most efficient thing to do. The fastest and the quickest way that you're gonna get a.
[00:10:35] is by a referral or using a recruiter. Those are the two things that I suggest anyone engage in, right? , I will even tell people, I'll say, look, get on LinkedIn and narrow it down where you want to go. But what are the companies that you want to target and attack?
[00:10:53] And if you can find those, , put the name of the, of a company into LinkedIn. You'll see who your mutual connections are. Yeah. Reach out to them. , the first place to go if you wanna get an interview is talk to that guy you took out for dinner.
[00:11:09] You know, two years ago when you were at X company or you had a glass of wine. . I mean, John, the fact that we're even on this call is because you and I had dinner together, right? That's right. Like, like this would not have come to fruition if we had not properly networked. So utilizing your network and utilizing the people you've talked to and when I first started doing that, I, I thought to myself, man, I was just having some wine with this guy.
[00:11:33] That's right. And here we, and here I am and really it's, it compounds like networking compounds. . My biggest thing is get out there if you're not already out there, and network as much as you can because your network is the most powerful thing you can have. And your brand is very powerful too.
[00:11:50] Like when you talk with individuals , and people think, Hey, I like that person. That person was very right. They're going to recommend you, so referrals are the best way to get the job. And then to circle back on that point, right? My wife got a job in January, Al because her previous employer, she knew someone.
[00:12:08] Who helped her get to the job, get, get aligned. And she's in sales, right? So there's probably a thousand people who applied that job. Yeah. But when you have a referral, guess what? You get the v i p passed and you get to skip the line. Yeah.
[00:12:17] Jon Beck: There, there's no doubt. The old adage of people buy from people and then even extended further, people hire people and they hire people that they know through their network and it doesn't matter if it's your first job or your 10th, it, it holds true.
[00:12:32] I appreciate you referencing. Reaching out to a recruiter. Which leads me to my next question, and I'll preface it by saying, , we drink our own champagne, eat our own dog food. Pick your metaphor. We recently hired, half a dozen salespeople. , and all of them came through third party agencies.
[00:12:49] And the reason why we used third party agencies, even though we are a recruiting firm, is number one, we don't focus on recruiting for sales people. Number two, we're really busy and don't have the time to run all those cycles. And number three, the opportunity cost of getting those people in, in, into the door working for us versus taking more time, doing it on our own is a no-brainer.
[00:13:09] We gonna have to pay some fees. So my question to you, Eric, You obviously have and run a talent team. I would venture to guess that of our entire client base, 90%, if not more, have some sort of recruiting or talent team. Where's the line of DM a C and what advice would you give to HR or recruiting talent leaders wherever it sits within a company to use partners like us and tech and others versus their own efforts?
[00:13:33] Where does the magic happen? Because , it does, right? If it's done right. Where does that.
[00:13:38] Eric Hudson: Well, I think no matter what, and I was talking with somebody, , about this in our finance team last couple weeks, and they wanted to use, an agency and it was like a big deal.
[00:13:49] They brought in, several people from fp and a to talk about it. Uh, we had, she was a vp, my recruiters were on the call and they basically wanted approval because at the time we didn't have approval to hire for a certain wreck. Mm-hmm. and so everybody was making a big deal about it.
[00:14:03] And I said, well, why can't we not just do it concurrently? It doesn't have to be a unilateral decision, we can have a partner, a staffing firm, or, or someone next to us recruiting, and then we can also recruit if we get to hire. It saves a company money, which is great, but at the same time, you have to get this wreck filled in a significant amount of time.
[00:14:26] And, and if, if they get the role. . I say You give it to 'em, right? Yeah. I mean, we're, we're trying to find this person in a timely manner, and there's something to, to say about the time it takes to find someone because, be real. A staffing agency is gonna be faster than someone internally.
[00:14:42] They always are. It's just how it is. They have just a higher sense of urgency. It's just how things work and hope. So anyways, . Don't get me wrong, I think I have some amazing recruiters on my team. They're all amazing, really good recruiters, like I've put up, up against anybody.
[00:14:56] Yeah. But the model of, of a recruiting agency, which focuses this revenue on filling a position is, is more targeted and, and usually is quicker. And I don't believe, and there's some ta HR people out there that. . Oh, you know, it's us versus the agency. Yeah. I don't think that is the proper mindset. I think you have to use a staffing firm as a partner.
[00:15:21] And here's another thing, you want a staffing partner that is someone you can trust and someone that you can collaborate with, and the ones that are very open with you and set expectations with you. Say, if I say to you, Hey, I got 30 positions I need to feel, can you feel all of. , I would hope that you would say, Eric, I'm, we're not gonna be able to fill all these, right?
[00:15:41] We could probably give you 10. We could probably give you 20. I'll be okay then I'll bring in a second vendor. But if, if you, but if you have that trust and you say, Eric, I think you can give us exclusivity on this, then I'm like, okay, I trust you. We're, we're partners together. Let's do that.
[00:15:57] So you need a partner no matter what. There's so many reasons to have a staffing partner. And I mean, and I, I, it always confuses me when people are like, oh, you shouldn't use agencies cuz that. You have to have an agency partner. And I'll give you an example.
[00:16:15] So when I first started at Amazon, we had to launch this Amazon office and this Amazon office. They, they wanted all internal hiring because they were trying to phase out staffing agencies cause they were paying too much in fees. Mm-hmm. . And we ended up doing it in one building, but we worked the recruiters to the bone.
[00:16:36] They all were working a hundred hour. and it became very clear that it was not sustainable unless we brought on an agency partner. So what did we do? The next building we had a split, right? So there was like a 75 25 split. And what happened? It was one of the most easiest launches of a building we ever had because not only do you have your internal folks, you have your external folks, and you have , a contingency.
[00:17:04] in case, something falls to the cracks on the internal ta. Yeah, my, my advice to anybody out there would be like, make sure you have a partner. Make sure you have someone that you can trust and if they, , if you, for some reason you think that it's like a, a competitive thing, don't think that, right?
[00:17:19] Because it's like, it's not that way. They're not gonna replace you. You need a TA person, you need a TA team at all times. And whenever you scale, you're gonna be glad that you. ,
[00:17:28] Jon Beck: which is why I, of all the terms that are out there for contract work, I prefer staff augmentation because it's true to the service that we're providing to the client as well too.
[00:17:37] We're augmenting their efforts. And also important to note, that in a lot of cases, hiring contractors is as expensive, and that's a fungible resource that you can turn on and turn off without the burden of, benefits and entitlements and those sort of things as well too. Exactly.
[00:17:52] All it's. . It astounds me though, even today that there are so many people unaware of this model, there's 200 over $200 billion spent in the United States on contract labor. I think things like the gig. Worker economy. The Upworks of the world are giving more insight and awareness to that, even though it's in a different form, but it still is this under the radar thing that happens.
[00:18:17] And we talk to a lot of companies that are on high growth trajectories where their managers aren't even thinking about it all they've known. In that start of environment, it's hiring FTEs, which is expensive, and comes with some risk. So it's just, it's fascinating how that works, Eric. Our viewers can't see us, but, I'm pretty sure you're working from home based on your background and I am as well too.
[00:18:38] Headline today that I literally just saw for you and I hopped on your former employer, Amazon just, , announced three days a week back to the office. It's hard to believe that we're still sorting all this out. But where do you personally stand on remote work in office? I know we're still calibrating by the way, I'm gonna come up, I think I'm gonna write a blog or try to coin the great recalibration because that's what we've gone through the last couple years on so many different fronts.
[00:19:01] Don't steal that if you're, if you're listening . But where do you think this thing lands, and what's the right thing to do? Because there's a lot of different opinions , and there's not right or wrong here. And I guess it depends on your profile, but what do you personally think?
[00:19:12] Eric Hudson: I, so I was actually texting with some of my.
[00:19:16] my Amazon buddies before this. And it's funny because one of 'em is a director there as well, and he mentioned that he's on a, now on a pitch count that he has to go into the office. He wasn't very, I love pitch count. I'm gonna, I love that . And he, and the funny thing is he just moved outside of, outside of the city.
[00:19:34] He lives in Nashville, so he was downtown before now. He just bought a house about an hour out, so now he's gonna have to go in. But before he could probably walk or. Scooter there, but, it's a complicated subject. I, I look, I think that delivery is the most important thing, and, it's one thing if you have a very big leader and they have to be present, but from what I've seen, I think that delivery has improved, or gotten better.
[00:20:05] If anything, I don't think it's gone downhill. If you're trying to put a culture together, and you're trying to bond and you're trying to collaborate on a more intimate level, that's when you need to go into the office. But if you're really a results driven company then I don't think it's necessarily, I don't think you have to mandate it.
[00:20:27] I think that eventually what's gonna happen is we're gonna move to a hybrid model, right? It's gonna. three, three days, two days in the office, whatever it might be. I can't speak for the long term obviously, but I, I mean, and another thing too is I also think about diversity, right?
[00:20:43] So you, you ask a lot of people have been talking about diversity. Mm-hmm. , and a lot of people wanna talk about diversity. I mean, if you really think about it, think about that mom, , I'm about to go maternity leave in three months.
[00:20:52] So I, you know, I, I get this, but think about that mom, right? That has to put her career on a shelf for a little bit, right? And she might be taking a step back now with work from home, a lot of that is, is really, you alleviate a lot of that because they can work from home and if they, and they can work time between, they can take a couple hours to work with their cannabis there.
[00:21:17] I think that there's so many things. , like just socioeconomic, that can change Yes. By working from home. Yes. And like I have a recruiter on my team who he works very hot hours. I think he wor, he doesn't start work really till like 10 and then he will, he'll work really late at night and that's the agreement that we've come to.
[00:21:38] And he's probably one of my top two recruiters. Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. and my whole team. So, . I think that, you should take it case by case, but I'm hard pressed to say you should go completely back to the office. Another thing too is we gotta think about the habits that people have created over the last, what, three years now?
[00:21:58] Mm-hmm. for three years. We've had people working from home, they see the benefits of it. They don't have to get into a, to a car, they don't have to sit, you know, spend 45 minutes in the rat race. Just stressed out all the way home. , they don't have to, , spend money on gas. They can save money on food cause they can just make a sandwich for lunch or eat groceries.
[00:22:18] They don't have to go to, pay for $15 salad at the office. Yep. People really have felt that. Yeah. And when you go back into the office, it's like, well, I don't wanna be here anymore. I'm gonna work remotely. And while employers can push it, several employers can push.
[00:22:35] they're not gonna be able to completely change because remote work has been here. Yeah. Right. But now it's, it's so prevalent in our society now, you could lead your job and go find a remote job. Yeah. And
[00:22:47] Jon Beck: they won't be able to compete because Right. Somebody's gonna offer the alternative.
[00:22:52] And I appreciate you rattled off a bunch of considerations and there's a ton. . I personally, like when I am commuting cuz we're a remote office, I obviously go out and see clients and take meetings and the thing that always strikes me for me personally is, I live in an area where a lot of people commute over the hill from areas where there's affordable housing.
[00:23:13] And I just think to myself, if I was doing that kind of like your friend in Nashville, that now is an hour plus away. all the things, not just around time and logistics, but cost, price of gas, even though it's gone down, it's still expensive. You gotta buy that $15 salad. There's just a whole host of reasons that, or were just frankly unfair to the worker.
[00:23:35] Especially in, high density here is like the Bay Area here. Plenty of other shoes that struggle with it. So, yeah, I think your comment around one size fit all is, is spot on. I think you have to address it. By the job and by , the profile of the company and all those considerations as well too.
[00:23:51] I wanna go back to, at, at the outset you talked a little bit about coaching. And you and I were chatting before we started to hit the record button about some crazy things that we've seen along the way. You were in the process of about, or about to publish a book. So one would love to hear specifically about the book.
[00:24:07] Any anecdotes that you have about coaching a candidate from being good to great.
[00:24:11] Eric Hudson: I appreciate you bringing that up. I am about to publish a book, the book's, , called Raising the Amazon Bar, and it's about my time at Amazon and how to really get a job at Amazon. Amazon has a very notoriously hard interview process.
[00:24:30] and when people see that they have been selected for an interview, whether that's from a recruiter or they have a call scheduled, they tend to start looking out there in the internet universe, and they immediately get overwhelmed. Yeah. And it's easy to understand why, right? Because it's a very hard process to get into and you have to put together really perfect examples to get through it.
[00:24:55] Yeah. Typically what they do is they will. Five interviewers. One of them is known as a bar razor. And a bar razor is just a really hard interviewer, and they have to be on the interview, and they're known for, peeling back the onion. One of the techniques that the CIA uses to interrogate people, they use that Amazon is also notorious for using a, risk mitigation process versus a hiring process.
[00:25:19] So they don't care about finding the gold medalist. They just wanna make sure the sprinter can be in the. . So basically they don't wanna hire the best person for the role. They don't, what they don't wanna do is they don't wanna hire the wrong person for the role. So that's typically their process.
[00:25:33] And it makes the interview very hard because they're continuously asking follow up questions and digging and digging and digging. So if you don't come prepared for that interview, you're not gonna get the job. Yeah. You're just not going. So I, I noticed there was not really anything out there about that.
[00:25:48] And as you know, I do executive coaching. and a lot of people do come to me about interviewing at Amazon. So I decided to write the book and I finished the manuscript, and now I'm in the process of editing and getting it published. So I'm really excited about that. Thank you for bringing it up. But again, the book is called Raising the Amazon Bar, and of course it's by me Eric Hudson.
[00:26:09] Jon Beck: By the way, I have quite a few colleagues and friends. That are at Amazon. And I, so that's a real thing. There are 20 plus interviews and all the things you just made and their scoring system and whatnot, it is, they, everyone to a person has said it's as brutal a process as they've ever gone through.
[00:26:25] And you're right. If you do a Google search, , or look at Reddit, there's just tons of information, a lot of misinformation too. And a lot of people wanna work for Amazon. So, congrats and I'm sure it's gonna be, a big. Yeah.
[00:26:35] Eric Hudson: Thank you. Thank you. But yeah, I'm, I'm hoping to help people and clear up some misunderstandings and, kinda dismiss any of the myths that are out there and, and focus on, what you should focus on.
[00:26:45] But to answer your question, you mentioned, what are some things that make candidates could great? My big thing is, so if you're, and I, and this is a Muhammad Ali quote, I won't steal it from him, but he basically said, I've won the battle far before. I dance under the lights. So it's all about preparation.
[00:27:04] And my big question to anyone who I coach or talk through through the Amazon process or really any interview is, what are the most, what are the things that you're most proud of? What are your career defining moments? Because if you're going to get the job, can't halfass it, right? I call it going from transactional to transformation.
[00:27:24] If you're interviewing for , a big level role, you have to be able to think about the roadmap, your vision, your strategy.
[00:27:31] How did you put it together? How did you get headcount? , how did you understand it was the right headcount? How did you put that headcount in place and align it? And then ultimately, and most importantly, what was the impact that you created? Because you have to ultimately ask yourself, how do you take your past examples and allow the interviewer to drop it in the future of the company and say, that's gonna be impactful here.
[00:27:54] The great ones can challenge themselves and make sure they're putting forth the best examples they can focus on, and do they create that future impact. That's probably the most important tip that I can give.
[00:28:06] There's a lot that goes into that, right? There's a lot of preparation. You have to go into that. Kind of talked about this earlier, but there's also the small things, right? So, uh, for example, I'll, I'll repeat this story. . I had someone interviewed Amazon one time and the hiring manager, jokes with me a lot about it cuz the interviewer came to the interview and had a fidget spinner.
[00:28:27] One of those things that you spent mm-hmm. and he went down to Mexico and he actually bought me a, a Mexico, uh, like bannered. fidget spinner as a joke, but he didn't get the job right of course not. So it's like those small things, sending a thank you note. Yeah, we, we talked about that earlier.
[00:28:43] A thank you note. That, that should be common sense, right? You interview with somebody send a thank you note. Last thing you wanna do is them be like, kind of rub the wrong way. Because interviewing's also a lot about perspective, also your background, right? Don't have an interview. , you're closing the bed, , you're interviewing with the, the c r o of a company.
[00:29:02] That's not gonna get you the job. So, um, I would say focus on the little things and of course, focus on the big impactful stuff and your examples and also your contributions. Make sure you're selling your contributions. A lot of people go into the interview and they say, we did this, we did that.
[00:29:17] They don't talk about what they did specifically. And how they led the initiative. You have to also sell what you contributed to that major impact, especially
[00:29:26] Jon Beck: given now how competitive the market has been. Back to the recalibration, the great recalibration. When things are good and people are hiring like crazy, maybe some of those little things slide for certain hiring managers.
[00:29:41] , I don't think it does for us. Thank you. Notes in particular, pet peeve. Haven't had a figi spinner yet, but I've certainly seen some other things. . The, and the lack of preparation I have. I used to not do this. Earlier in my career as a manager, I certainly do it now if I'm on with a candidate , and they're not prepared and they haven't, done research on the company or don't have questions for me, like the interview's over respectfully, like, look, it, you're asking for a lot of money and this is a, a job that's really important to us and we would hope it would be important to you if you didn't take the time to figure out who we are, what we do, and who you're talking to, then you know that, that tells me all I need to know at this
[00:30:16] Eric Hudson: point.
[00:30:17] Especially if you're interviewing with the CEO o of the company, like, come on. Yeah. But,
[00:30:20] Jon Beck: but really anyone, it's a respect thing. It's a common courtesy thing, right. So, yeah.
[00:30:25] Eric Hudson: Yeah. No, no doubt about that. No. About, no doubt about that. And, and questions too. Like, you want to ask thought-provoking questions.
[00:30:30] Don't, don't come with soft ballers. Right. It, it, it's not hard to ask. Well, you know, what does, what did, what does last year look like in the next year, right. Or what, if you had to look at the company when you fir, when you first joined to where you are today. How have your expectations changed?
[00:30:46] Right. A very civil question, but it makes 'em think. And if you don't come with those kind of questions, it's really rude to be very honest with you. Yeah. Yeah. Not to mention,
[00:30:55] Jon Beck: are you a two minute Google search. You could find those lists anywhere. Eric, we have a couple minutes left, so I wanna put you through a bit of a speed round here with some quick questions and answers.
[00:31:03] Some of them fun, some of them were a little more relative. So we'll, we'll start the clock here. , first one is, Mac or Windows. , Good answer. Uh, teams or zoom? Zoom. Zoom. Again. You're two for two. In my book Starbucks, Pete's Fills. I could probably rattle off three or four more. More other
[00:31:18] Eric Hudson: coffee of choice.
[00:31:20] Uh, local coffee. Good. Another
[00:31:23] Jon Beck: good answer. Hard to find though in
[00:31:24] Eric Hudson: these days. It is, it is. Find that local. I I always do a lot of research. Who's
[00:31:28] Jon Beck: your, who's your local? Give a shout out to your local coffee
[00:31:30] Eric Hudson: please. Uh, LDU right next door. I can walk over there. Nice. Love
[00:31:34] Jon Beck: it. Chat, g p c helps or hurts. Recruit.
[00:31:39] Helps expand. Tell me
[00:31:41] Eric Hudson: more. Take a second here. Um, so bullying searches, just make your bullying search, make it quick, right? You can, you don't have to, you don't have to work as hard, as a matter of fact, emails like, so I'm not to spend much time out here, but a software developer that I know talked about this, he goes, it's not gonna be perfect.
[00:31:59] It's not gonna be always right, but what it can do is it can give you a framework and save you time, right? . Um, another example, my, it was my wife and I for Valentine's Day. I wrote her a poem on G B T and I put in Lewis, listen, I, I put, I said, okay. We did long distance for a year, back in the day. Uh, she loves champagne.
[00:32:18] She loves to travel. Um, she, she also, , we do coffee dates together every once in a while. And we're about to have a little girl. Yeah. So I, I said, write a poem by my wife and I put all those details in there and it wrote the, and wrote this poem and I read to my wife, she started to cry.
[00:32:34] Did you tell her it was through chat c I did eventually. Yes. And she laughed. . That is fantastic. People like that though. .
[00:32:42] Jon Beck: That is fantastic. I love it. So good for recruiters and good for
[00:32:45] Eric Hudson: your marriage. Okay. Absolutely. Um,
[00:32:48] Jon Beck: best bo, best boss you ever had.
[00:32:49] Eric Hudson: And. , uh, best boss I ever had in wine is actually the current one I have.
[00:32:54] And he, he was my boss at Amazon as well. But I'll what, you know, here's the thing, right? So like a boss should be someone who mentors and makes you better, but at the same time doesn't hold your hand and challenges you and gives you autonomy. And he does that. Yeah. .
[00:33:12] Jon Beck: And then last question that all of our guests, get on the show is the way back question, which is, if you could, tell yourself when you were first starting your career, that first job at Tech Systems, with all the experience and the things that you've done today, what one piece of advice would you give yourself, when you were first starting, based on what you know today?
[00:33:32] Eric Hudson: I would say it's okay to be nice. It's okay to be a good person. . so when I came to Amazon, you know, I was, I was a pretty nice guy and I thought it was a weakness, so I would kind of overcompensate sometimes and, show more backbone than I needed to. And the fact of the matter is you can, and I, obviously I'm matured and grew out of that.
[00:33:56] You can be a good guy and you can have backbone. , you can also just be a pleasant person and be great in business. And I really didn't know that until I started reading books about people who were, who were like that. I just finished Shoe Dog, by the way, which is the Phil Knight story. Mm-hmm. , Phil Knight is kind of like that.
[00:34:15] Mm-hmm. , Phil Knight is very laid back. He, you know, he, he knows when he's not the expert and he brings people around. He's, he's kind of hands off. Um, he, he helps people grow and gives 'em scope to grow them right. He's a good guy. He's a nice guy. And I think that I would just say , don't be, don't have anxiety that you're, that you're considered a nice guy.
[00:34:39] That that would be my advice to myself. Excellent. And that it's okay. Right. Yeah. You can still be great at business and be Be a nice guy. Yeah. And
[00:34:48] Jon Beck: being true to yourself.
[00:34:50] Eric Hudson: That's, uh, yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely. Absolutely. Excellent.
[00:34:53] Jon Beck: Thank you for that. , listen, Eric, it's been a pleasure. Thank you for making time.
[00:34:58] I know you are a busy person and appreciate you coming on and sharing, your wisdom and perspective. When's the book due
[00:35:04] Eric Hudson: to hit? It is still going through the publishing timeline. I don't know how long it's gonna take, but right now we're trying to aim for May. Awesome.
[00:35:12] Jon Beck: Well, we'll make sure to, to post and support that.
[00:35:14] Appreciate the time. , we'll come back and do it again sooner than later. And for our listeners as always, keep the faith, keep grinding, keep safe, and we will see you next time on hiring you. Thanks again, Eric. Thank.