Robert Godden’s musings and rants

I muse. I rant. This is my outlet!

Doing All Right

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A friend of mine has won a fairly spectacular award. I’ll reproduce his company’s press release here, then tell you what I think.

The Recruiting Conference Inc. announced that Informatica, the world’s number one independent provider of data integration software and Dave Mendoza, global talent acquisition consultant, have won the Excellence in Sourcing Innovation award. The winners were honored November 1st during the Recruiting Conference’s annual recruiting and sourcing event at the InterContinental Chicago-O’Hare.

The awards highlight some of the best recruiting efforts by corporate recruitment departments, recruitment advertising/creative agencies on behalf of clients operating in any industry sector, or private or public companies.

“The Excellence in Sourcing Innovation Award was awarded to Informatica for applying SEO based tactics in their global sourcing and recruiting efforts, and for leveraging multiple social media platforms beyond their intended utilities,” said Anna Brekka, VP of North America for Onrec.

Informatica brought global talent acquisition consultant Dave Mendoza in to spearhead their sourcing and recruiting objectives in 2010. Mendoza’s work with Informatica has revealed unique sourcing and talent mapping challenges being faced by companies globally, particularly in high growth areas like APAC and EMEA.

“Dave has opened doors to revolutionary ways of talent mapping through competitive intelligence that are immediately actionable. As Informatica continues to expand globally and is seeking out the best talent in the industry, he has been a great thought partner,” said Brad Cook, Global Vice President of Talent Acquisition at Informatica.

“Informatica is known for innovation and quality in its products and my goal is to bring that same level of innovation into how we attract and retain top industry talent. We invest in our global talent acquisition team with unparalleled, cutting edge technologies, and subject matter expertise level training in both social media and sourcing that clearly differentiate us from other Silicon Valley companies. Our recruiters and sourcers are our top priority and as a result we source and attract the smartest people in an exceptionally competitive market.”

Mendoza’s strategic roadmap earned Informatica recognition earlier this year as winner of the “Most Strategic Use of Technologies” category at the 2011 ERE Recruiting Excellence Awards. Mendoza has received numerous recognitions this past year for his initiatives in the area of talent mapping with an emphasis on product aligned competitive intelligence and bench marking best practices.

Industry analyst and respected pundit Gerry Crispin stated: “As more sophisticated recruiting models emerge with pipelines that are years in the making, we are bound to see new sourcing strategies that mash-up social media channels with competitive intelligence goals to map talent even as they form their skills, knowledge and experience. Some of the work by Brad Cook and David Mendoza at Informatica has recently been recognized for cutting these new paths in the recruiting forest.”

About Informatica: Organizations around the world gain a competitive advantage in today’s global information economy with timely, relevant and trustworthy data for their top business imperatives. More than 4,500 enterprises worldwide rely on Informatica to access, integrate and trust their information assets held in the traditional enterprise, off premise and in the Cloud.

Contact: Brad Cook, Global VP of Talent Acquisition, (650) 385

About Dave Mendoza: Dave Mendoza is a globally recognized, subject matter expert in the development and implementation of global talent acquisition strategies, advanced sourcing methodologies to generate passive talent pipelines, and recruitment technologies innovator.

Contact: Dave Mendoza, Talent Strategist, (303)

OK, so that’s the press release. Self-explanatory. But very corporate.

Dave has helped me numerous times with support and encouragement. He has helped me grow my network and had kind things to say about some of my books.

Don’t get me wrong, the award above is fantastic. In our industry he is deservedly féted as the best. He and a few others more or less created the whole field of Sourcing; then became the rock stars of that field,

But to me, the support and encouragement that I have seen Dave give to others is an even worthier achievement, and one that there isn’t an award ceremony for.

If you get a chance to hear him speak, do so, If you get a chance to have your company bring him in to consult, do so. He is a giant amongst sourcers. He is a passionate advocate for methods and technologies that people are only just beginning to get.

Well done Dave. I’m proud to know you.

Written by robertgodden

November 9, 2011 at 5:54 pm


with one comment

Since I last blogged here, I have created 67 posts on two other blogs – The Devotea’s Tea Spouts and The Beasts of Brewdom.

Every one of them mentioned tea.

This one does not, and therefore, it is more properly based here.

I am going to whine, to rant, to fume.

I am down $39AUD.

Now, $39 is not a lot, though it can buy eduction for a child for a year in some places.

Here in Adelaide, it buys a quite cheap meal for two.

Several weeks ago, just before an eight-week course that my better half & I have been teaching concluded, Living Social made an offer of a meal at Veena Tandoori restaurant in Brighton, South Australia for $39.

We’ve driven past that place for many years. always planned to try it.

So I decided to take up the offer as a small celebration for the following week.

I’ve used Living Social before, and it worked just fine.

This time, I decided to send the voucher as a gift.

And basically, it never arrived.

The screens went a bit screwy. As I went through, it told me that it had charged $39 to my credit card (it had) and it had sent “0 vouchers”  to my long-suffering wife.

0 vouchers? Turned out to be true. We waited the required two days and it never turned up. Not in the inbox, spam, archive, or even when I pulled up the account on the server. Nothing.

The obvious answer is to go on and print it. No, wait, that doesn’t work.

The next obvious answer is to contact their support. I did. and their reply (from September 29th)

Hi Robert Godden,

Thank you for submitting your question to us online. Help Request #01432339: “I can’t find my voucher” has been created and a LivingSocial Consumer Advocate will respond to you shortly.

Thank you,

Consumer Advocate Team

Since then, Nothing. Nada. Zip. You get the picture.

Anyone can have a failure. No-one is immune.

But to not follow this up? That’s just stupid.

So, I got on Twitter and Facebook, and started letting my several thousand followers across all my accounts that Living Social had let me down. I think “Ripped me Off” is a reasonable turn of phrase.

STILL no response. You would think a social marketing company would be smarter than that. When my sister-in-law had a problem with, I sent one email and it was fixed that day. Not in this case.

So, here’s what I am going to do – I’m going to over-react. I’ll be promoting this blog. asking people I know I share it about the place. Asking people I don;t know. Complete strangers. Anyone. Please share it.

I want to force Living Social to fix this. As a symbol of how they just can’t get away with this sort of stuff. Not to me, not to anyone.

And when I finally get what I want. I’ll send $39 to the Indus Foundation, and they can educate a child in India for a year.

Here’s an update:

A few days after I posted this, I got this email from Living Socail:

Hi Robert Godden,

In response to your recent Help Request #01432339: “I can’t find my voucher” we would like to provide you with the following solution.

I’m sorry for the delay in getting back to you. We’re currently in the process of reconfiguring our email system worldwide, so we are a little bit behind at the moment! I hope I can assure you our typical email reply times are more like 24 hours than a month!

Unfortunately we are having some trouble finding your voucher in the system – would you be able to provide us with your name as it is on the credit card, or any other email addresses you might have? To help us further, if possible, if you could forward us either a scanned image or a screenshot of the charge on your card statement that would be great

If this Solution did not resolve your issue or you still have questions, please give us a call at 1800 548 762.

Thank you,

LivingSocial Australia & New Zealand Consumer Services Team

Notice they said how unusual it was that I had to wait a month, not  “24 hours”.

So I replied.


No Reply.

Upon reviewing the email, I noted the phone number. I have called them, and am on hold.

We shall see.


Written by robertgodden

October 18, 2011 at 7:16 am

I’m Going Slightly Mad

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Sometimes, I have the capacity to surprise myself – with my own stupidity.

When you try to think strategically, at a high level, you can sometimes miss the simple things. And I have. I’ve been embarrassed by a simple question.

Of course, the question came from my better half. She has a great way of cutting through the nonsense and asking incisive questions.

So, some background.

Fact One:

A few years ago, I write a book called ”1001 Nights in the Trans Arabian Corporation’s Boardroom”.  The thirty-second wrap-up of it is: it’s a business book, but amusingly written as a work of fiction. It uses a fable-historical-dramatic-comedic-horror-science fiction approach to talk about career and personal development, marketing, HR and business ethics and management in an easy and enjoyable format.

The book was not exactly a best seller, despite having a wide range of arresting characters including a cast of vampires that turn up in about a quarter of the stories.

Fact Two:

I have some experience in, and exposure too, social media as a business tool. In fact, I’m about to co-present a TV show about that very topic.

Fact Three:

In doing research for that show, I’ve been aware that vampires have been a top-ten twitter subject for at least a year.

So here’s the question from my better half:

“If you’re so interested in social media as a marketing tool, and vampires are hot right now, and your book is full of vampires, why aren’t you promoting it on Twitter and the like?”

Hmm, I immediately thought of an answer. But to be sure, I twittered the question and got a few opinions, and yes, it confirmed my worst suspicion – I have been a first-class idiot.

So, here’s what I aim to do.

The site from which I sell my book has had 4625 hits at the point of writing this blog. With one week to go before we shoot the TV show, I’d like to double that via Twitter.

Easy you say? But I only have nine followers on my brand new account – I started a new one because my original one was languishing and had hundreds of scumbag scammer attached.

So, without being a spammer myself, how can I do this?

It’s simple – people will re-tweet what they find interesting. So, is this blog interesting enough? Only time will tell – and I’m giving it a week.

Either way, I’ve got a story for the TV show. But by casting a tiny seed into the wind, will the story be a demonstration of the need to plan and execute such campaigns professionally to cut through the clutter (because it fails) or a demonstration of the power of an idea within the engine of Twitter.

Let’s all find out.

Written by robertgodden

December 7, 2009 at 8:53 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Pain is so close to pleasure

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Forgive me, for I have sinned.

It is one year and one week since my last blog.

Back then, the blog went off the rails a bit. We were embarking on a  new venture, and the world seemed full of endless possibilities.

One of the really big possibilities was an economic crash, but back then – a week or so before it really hit – it didn’t seem that real.

One of the others was that some of our carefully researched and checked information was a bit wrong. The problem with any data is that if the observer is not impartial, it can be seen to mean anything.

Big things happened in the world in the last year. Economies melted. Countries ailed. Good people died. Bad people died. Always in the wrong ratio.

I lost a childhood friend who was in his early 40’s. Even though I appreciate that if I lived in Baghdad or Kabul, that might be a daily occurrence; it still feels terribly awful that I never managed to squeeze in a visit to him once we learnt of his illness.

The business we bought; well, that is another tale. In fact, it’s related in an article in The Fordyce Letter, so let’s not bother here.

Still, we live in one of favourite places in the world; and I always remember that if you speak English as a first language, you’re probably in the top 20% wealthiest people in the world! I read that in a book on cooking cheaply way back in my teens.

Anyway, back to the “off the rails” bit. The blog stopped talking about all sorts of stuff and became very personal and less external. Not really what I have envisaged.

But these things evolve.

From here on, this will remain a more personal blog. My blogging activity on issues will move to the blog on; where every second blog will be my responsibility.

And here I’ll relate anything I want to comment on. Given that I’ve only ever met one person who’s read this, it’s the least I can do for myself.

The 08/09 financial year has been full of both pleasure and pain for us. The next twelve months will certainly have more of one than the other. It remains to be seen which side of the ledger it falls.

Written by robertgodden

August 5, 2009 at 6:48 pm

Dreamer’s Ball

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Today we – that is, my vastly better half and myself  – registered a new Australian Proprietary Limited Company.

Why? It seems we must be stark raving mad.

After eight years in recruitment, steadily aiming at a general management role, I had two offers on the table – but instead, we’ve bought a restaurant.

Other than being a fair cook and a big fan of Gordon Ramsey, I’m not qualified in the least to run a restaurant. My wife has a similar lack of restaurant experience, and our son once worked for Hungry Jacks(that’s Burger King for any non-Australians reading this).

Personally, I’ve lost a third of my body weight in this year. I still have more to go. That’s going to add to the challenge – discipline will be paramount.

So, we have bought a restaurant with a proud history – and it’s a little run down. We’ll be attempting to bring it up to a higher standard of service delivery and earnings.

We’ve got plans; dreams; ambitions. We’ve got ideas. We’re dreamers.

So today, we celebrate the birth of Dreamer’s Ball Pty Ltd.

Written by robertgodden

July 28, 2008 at 7:11 am

Posted in Business, Family

Keep Yourself Alive

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Last week, not long after writing my blog, I resigned from my job.

If you re-read “Spread Your Wings” below, it seem pretty obvious that I was about to. It’s not going to be announced until later today – I’m counting on the fact that this blog is not exactly mass communication of a message, but twitter me if you have a comment on that!

So, why leave an interesting and exciting job with a great start-up that has taken the Adelaide market by storm?

After several years in the planning stages, it kicked off last year, and I was employee number one. For eighteen months I’ve put in huge weeks and we’ve achieved a lot. The staff levels have grown exponentially. Our first trading year has been a multi-million dollar smash hit success. The directors are very happy.

But I’m not happy.

Several managers have described me as a butterfly. I flit frm interesting task to interesting task. For any micro-manager out there, you might see that as a weakness.

But without small, flittering insects who pollinate as they go, we would not be here.

In a start-up, a butterfly is invaluable – there’s just so much to do. People who can work on a revolving schedule of twenty projects – and deliver about 90% of them – are actually a great asset, as more methodical people will be overwhelmed with a need to make everything perfect, as opposed to make everything happen.

When I’ve worked in big, big organisations, a butterfly is pretty useful there too (For example, the entirely fictitious story “Intestinal Fortitude” in my book 1001 Nights is a thinly-veiled recounting of my experiences doing just that). You need to have a few agitators for change, or you become stale.

The problem is, butterflies aren’t that useful in an organisation that is consolidating. So, I’m leaving.

I have no complete plans. No definite job to go to. I am considering buying a business, I’m shortlisted for a role outside of recruitment, I’m considering running my own consultancy and I’ve been approached to head a division for a major recruiter.

All jobs for a butterfly?

Written by robertgodden

July 21, 2008 at 7:09 am

Spread Your Wings

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When is it time to leave your job?

What a great question that is.

It used to be that people would hang around in a job they hated for years, because leaving was such a big deal. But times have changed.

So, what drives us to change?

I think the lack of challenge is the easiest and most positive reason to cite. “Well, I’m bored, so I’m off” sounds good, but it’s amazing how many people who say this go into fundamentally the same job elsewhere.

Opportunity is a better reason. An opportunity to explore something new, make a wad of cash, to work for yourself. To test yourself, to put your family in a better position, to work with someone you admire – there’s opportunity to be found everywhere.

But there’s two schools of thought – was Jon Mitchell right – “You never know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone” or is it true you can’t grasp something with both hands if your hands are already full? In other words, do you sit back and slowly find a better deal or just say “to hell with it”, quit and blaze forward?

I would have said, at one time, it depends on the kind of person you are. I now think it depends on the kind of person you are now.

We all change, and opportunity and risk abound.

The work environment can play a major part in your decision, and not always a positive one. If you are overworked and/or underpaid and/or bullied and/or part of a culture that puts you under stress, then you might not see the picture clearly until you resign.

That will sharpen your thoughts!

But it’s easier to get a job if you’ve got one, according to conventional wisdom. Well, conventional wisdom has been wrong before!

Ultimately it’s down to the individual, with help and support from those closest to them. Omen and portents, faith (in anything, including oneself), further opportunity, all play a part, but at the end of the day, it’s a big decision.

And it’s up to you. Play it safe or leap of faith.

You’ll know when it’s time to spread your wings.

Written by robertgodden

July 14, 2008 at 7:22 am