The domain name business is small, and the business of domain investing is even smaller. It seems that most people involved in the domain space know each other or know of each other. This can pose challenges for people who work in the business and need to be discreet. One such example is job recruiters / head hunters.
Enough time has passed that I am comfortable sharing this story. A while back, a recruiter reached out to me about a job opening at a domain industry company. I am pretty sure she found my information on LinkedIn, although I am not sure why she felt I was qualified for the position. The strangest aspect of her recruiting email was that the position was currently filled by someone I know. This person apparently didn’t know the company had engaged a recruiter to find a replacement.
Generally speaking, recruiters need to be discreet because most people aren’t comfortable discussing other job opportunities over their work email or while in their offices. The onus is typically on the job applicant to be discreet when communicating with a recruiter, although a good recruiter should also be discreet.
When it comes to hiring within the domain industry, the pool is small. Sometimes, as was the case with this position, an experienced domain industry person was desired for the job opportunity. This likely means that the recruiter contacted people connected with the person whose job was being filled. Had I desired to embarrass this person or put the company in an uncomfortable position, it would have been easy to share details of what was shared with me or publish information about the job. I had no interest in doing that, but others may not have cared and published it on a forum or elsewhere.
Companies that are hiring need to ensure that their recruiters are familiar with the collegiality of the domain name business. While there are many participants across the world, many people are connected and have business or personal relationships that could derail the process and potentially hurt the feelings of an employee.