• balazs (cs)

    And the manager is still sitting there, unable to tell that this story had really happened to him or it's just some bad dream :)

  • ObiWayneKenobi (cs)

    This is something I don't get. We all constantly sympathize with snoofle and the crazy shit he has to put up with. He decides to interview, and gets the job, but turns it down because they didn't tech screen him because they know he's competent from his posts.

    That's the WTF. Now if you weren't really looking for a job but just trolling interviews, this is fine, but then you are basically admitting that you enjoy your crazy WTF job and don't actually want to leave. If not, you're trolling the interviewer because he shouldn't need to give you a tech screen if he knows you're good. Kind of like if you have a well-known blog with lots of technology snippets (or are a frequent contributor to existing ones) or if you're known at conferences; you don't NEED a tech screen because your reputation precedes you.

    So either snoofle is a masochist or a troll.

  • HydroPeter (unregistered)

    TRWTF is "I asked if I could use his PC to show him something, opened up a browser, went to TDWTF, logged in as snoofle and showed him." and "Trust Your Instincts"

    So why should one enter the username and password on a pc you don't trust belonging to a person/company you don't trust?

  • MicMac (unregistered)

    There it is. Even more indication that snoofle is just making stuff up.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    ...doubts...
    Or maybe I'd consider another job if it was "right". This guy tech'd me out. What bugged me was that he was willing to hire "snoofle" (when he didn't know it was me) without doing a tech out.
  • snoofle (cs) in reply to HydroPeter
    HydroPeter:
    TRWTF is "I asked if I could use his PC to show him something, opened up a browser, went to TDWTF, logged in as snoofle and showed him." and "Trust Your Instincts"

    So why should one enter the username and password on a pc you don't trust belonging to a person/company you don't trust?

    A) At that point I was still trying to get the job, B) it's not like it was my bank login/password and C) I changed it as soon as I left
  • Snowyowl (cs) in reply to HydroPeter
    So why should one enter the username and password on a pc you don't trust belonging to a person/company you don't trust?

    Because it's fairly unlikely the manager is running a keylogger on his own computer in case someone else asks to borrow it. It's not like he's a sysadmin, after all.

    Joking aside, snoofle probably did the right thing here. Remember that he already has a job, he doesn't need a new one right now. And these guys signed him up based on a 5-year-old résumé and hero-worship.

    Interviews are as much about the candidate judging the recruiter as they are the other way around.

  • PSWorx (cs) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi

    A meta story with this-is-just-happening bonus? I thought you only get stuff like this on 4chan...

    ObiWayneKenobi:
    So either snoofle is a masochist or a troll.
    Yes and no. On the one hand, you're right - the HR manager was obviously a long-time reader of TDWTF and long-time fan of snoofle (Kudos for him in those two points). So this hardly qualifies as "blindly hiring an unknown entity". On the other hand, the manager's reaction very much gives the impression he was that one kind of fan you really can do without when doing a blog - any kind of blog. So snoofle's reaction might have been right.

    ... I realize the manager in question will probably read this. I'm kind of wondering how this story will continue.

    Addendum (2013-05-06 07:10): (The manager's reaction after snoofle declined, that is.)

  • ObiWayneKenobi (cs) in reply to snoofle
    snoofle:
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    ...doubts...
    Or maybe I'd consider another job if it was "right". This guy tech'd me out. What bugged me was that he was willing to hire "snoofle" (when he didn't know it was me) without doing a tech out.

    What's wrong with that, though? "Snoofle" is an online handle, but with a lot of knowledge with the posts. If your real name is "John Smith", then there's no correlation. Do you think he would have tech'd you out if your snoofle posts were under your real name (assuming you could as easily prove it was you)?

    Maybe I'm missing something. It sounds like you turned it down because he tech'd you out as a random person, but if he had known you were snoofle you wouldn't have been, and I don't see why that's bad. If you had posted lots of blogs or how-tos or videos under your real name, and were a well-known person in the community, do you think he would have tech'd you out just because, when he probably normally reads your stuff all the time?

    I'm in the .NET world so I'll use people from that as examples, but if you were interviewing somebody like Rob Conery or Scott Hanselman or Ayende Rahien, and they used some weird online handle, I wouldn't expect them to be tech'd when it was revealed who they were, because it's well known they know their stuff. The guy said that he knew "snoofle" knew his stuff from the posts, and didn't need to tech screen him. At that point he didn't know you were snoofle, so he had to have a way to vet your skills. You seem to have taken offense to the fact that he wouldn't have given a tech screen to you but hired you on the spot if you had said after asking him "I'm snoofle, glad you like my posts" or whatever, but I'm still failing to see why.

  • Sniffles (unregistered)

    Yeah, I guess I don't get it.

    In a sense, he HAD tech'd out snuffle previously. If I read all of Kalen Delany's books and she comes in for a job, I'm probably NOT going to bother teching her out.

    No offense, but I see you as the WTF here, not them.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    snoofle:
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    ...doubts...
    Or maybe I'd consider another job if it was "right". This guy tech'd me out. What bugged me was that he was willing to hire "snoofle" (when he didn't know it was me) without doing a tech out.

    What's wrong with that, though?

    Like I said, I don't know why it bugged me - it just did. Past experience has taught me to trust my gut when I get "that" feeling.

  • mendel (unregistered)

    I'm currently reading Kahnemann's "Thinking Fast and Slow", and this sounds like one of the biases he's been talking about: the manager wants to answer the question, "is Snoofle a good fit for this position", and instead his intuition substitutes the question "do you like Snoofle's writing" and takes the answer to that as the answer to the former question. It happens all the time when people make decisions.

    In this case, it appears kind of harmless, because, come on, what are the chances Snoofle actually applied for job with him? It would be bad if he hired everyone based on his likes/dislikes, but if the interview process as a whole, including the 30 minute manager interview, is sound, that's not going to be an issue, is it?

    The question is, what other decisions might that manager take without being aware of his biases, and how much corrective input would he be willing to take from his subordinates, given that he's a Snoofle fan? Though I can see it might become difficult to discuss conflicts of opinion if "hero worship" came into it, so the decision to decline the position was perhaps justified for that reason alone.

  • ubersoldat (cs)

    We are snoofle. We are Legion.

  • Flash (cs)

    Would I hire person X (or snoofle) without a technical vetting? Given that hypothethical question, I might answer yes. Hey, we're just talkin' here.

    But if X is actually sitting across the desk from me, I think I'd do my due diligence and ask my standard (and non-standard) questions to make sure I'm doing the right thing by offering a job.

    It may not have been fair to judge the interviewing manager based on what was to him an informal blue-sky question. He might have answered in the spirit of WTF-ery.

    We won't know if snoofle made the correct assessment of his potential new employer. (But that threat to reveal his identity wasn't a classy move.)

  • Rhywden (cs) in reply to mendel
    mendel:
    I'm currently reading Kahnemann's "Thinking Fast and Slow", and this sounds like one of the biases he's been talking about: the manager wants to answer the question, "is Snoofle a good fit for this position", and instead his intuition substitutes the question "do you like Snoofle's writing" and takes the answer to that as the answer to the former question. It happens all the time when people make decisions.

    In this case, it appears kind of harmless, because, come on, what are the chances Snoofle actually applied for job with him? It would be bad if he hired everyone based on his likes/dislikes, but if the interview process as a whole, including the 30 minute manager interview, is sound, that's not going to be an issue, is it?

    The question is, what other decisions might that manager take without being aware of his biases, and how much corrective input would he be willing to take from his subordinates, given that he's a Snoofle fan? Though I can see it might become difficult to discuss conflicts of opinion if "hero worship" came into it, so the decision to decline the position was perhaps justified for that reason alone.

    That type of bias is called the "halo effect" in psychology.

    For example, a well-behaved and properly clothed person will generally receive better marks than a Punker. Even when the actual work done by both is the same in every other aspect.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to Flash
    Flash:
    that threat to reveal his identity wasn't a classy move.)
    In the interests of full disclosure, this happened in an industry where, thanks to events of 20+ years ago, every firm has a formal no-harassment HR policy, and every employee is required to acknowledge it in writing annually. I suspect the manager was trying to convince "snoofle" (as opposed to me) to take the job, and may have been talking faster than he was thinking. In all fairness, if he had thought about it for a second, I strongly doubt he would have made that remark.
  • Len (unregistered)

    ShitThatDidntHappen.aspx

  • Soviut (cs) in reply to Rhywden

    [quote user="Rhywden"][quote user="mendel"] That type of bias is called the "halo effect" in psychology.

    For example, a well-behaved and properly clothed person will generally receive better marks than a Punker. Even when the actual work done by both is the same in every other aspect.[/quote]

    But when someone's work is well known and on public display, this isn't really a matter of perception anymore.

  • Meta Commenter (unregistered)
    1. Competent Recruiter who fills a slot based on a 5 year old resume without asking for a updated resume
    2. Competent staff asking relevant questions to the position they're trying to fill
    3. Forthright snoofle who doesn't play games with the interview staff by playing coy when they stumble into a area of special expertise
    4. Competent snoofle who refuses to log on to TDWTF from a computer of unknown security (trojanized, keylogged, etc.)
    5. Snarky meta commentary in HTML comments.
  • Steve The Cynic (cs)

    (Caveat lector: This is just my opinion.)

    My take on this is that the WTF is strong in both sides on this occasion.

    Why?

    For the manager, the threat to unveil is a clear sign, but the first question about snoofle wins Steve The Cynic's "Left Field Question" award, especially as it was followed by several other questions from the same long-grassed part of the ball park.

    Snoofle, however, (sorry, dude, but it's how I see it) scores a WTF point in his answer to the first "snoofle" question. Answering like that was grossly unfair to the manager - it could be read as secretly laughing at him as you played hide-and-seek with the questions. If you are a pseudonymous blogger / forum poster / etc., and someone who doesn't know of your link to the pseudonym asks you for an opinion of your pseudonymous writing (as if you are commenting on someone else), then following that lead could (should?) be seen as "leading him on" to say something silly.

    A better answer would have been to simply say that you can't really answer that, seeing as how you are indeed that person, and that answering the question impartially would be unlikely to be believable. Sure, you might still get into the style-free threat-to-reveal, but it's probably better to get into it sooner rather than later.

    I'd guess you probably made the right decision, but not necessarily for the right reason. There is probably some undesirable politicking going on that you missed out on the opportunity to discover on the job. Like an interview I had back in 95. The technical part went well, but their manager was out of the country on business, so they said that they would contact him and let him know what was what.

    (Context) The company made molecular modelling software, and was trying to move into a more commercially-oriented mode of operation (rather than being run by physicist-programmers). (/Context)

    Anyway, after a few days of silence, the agent who landed me the interview called me back to let me know that sorry, they had seen some other CVs (no interviews!) and therefore they wouldn't be proceeding with me. OK, so much for that. It looked interesting but if they are going to be like that, I'm probably better off without it.

    Then two weeks later (just as I was in the process of accepting an offer elsewhere) the agent called me again. The poor guy must have known how any sane person would answer, but he has to make the call because it's the company that pays his bills, not me. Apparently there had been some sort of management-level punch-up, back and forth, and the practical result was that (reading between the lines) the "more-commercial" faction had won the round, so I was back in the spotlight. Was I still interested?

    I'm sort of glad I had had another (good) offer elsewhere, because it gave me an easy out, without having to tell the poor agent that no, I wasn't interested in being a political football in that kind of snake pit (to mix a few metaphors)...

  • Jake (unregistered) in reply to snoofle
    snoofle:
    Past experience has taught me to trust my gut when I get "that" feeling.
    Experience acquired, no doubt, in the intervening years since you interviewed for the horror show where you work now.

    Or maybe the real reason you turned it down is you sensed a loss of WTFstream that makes you the international star you are.

  • Mike (unregistered) in reply to mendel

    I don't agree with this one. People are more likely to show there true opinions when they think they are anonymous so I'd think if you like someones answers and more importantly reasons behind them from a site like DWTF than you likely will agree with them when they work for you. What were you upset about that they took your choice of stories as your interview rather than the questions they chose themselves? Either way they get an idea about you.

  • mendel (unregistered) in reply to Rhywden
    Rhywden:
    mendel:
    I'm currently reading Kahnemann's "Thinking Fast and Slow", and this sounds like one of the biases he's been talking about: the manager wants to answer the question, "is Snoofle a good fit for this position", and instead his intuition substitutes the question "do you like Snoofle's writing" and takes the answer to that as the answer to the former question. [..]
    That type of bias is called the "halo effect" in psychology. [..]
    I was referring to "attribute substitution", actually.

    The halo effect would make Snoofle's interview performance seem better than it actually is, giving that performance a "halo"; but the manager never actually intended to interview Snoofle, because he already had the (inappropriate) answer.

    Also, I'm tickled pink that Snoofle favored my comment. Thanks!

  • warlaan (unregistered)

    Sorry, but this story sounds totally fishy to me. I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.

    And now there's a manager who reads TDWTF (strange but still believable), remembers the authors' pseudonyms and expects others to do so as well?

    Also: if anyone ever asked me about posts by "warlaan" I would be 90% sure that they already knew that that's my pseudonym. Snoofle on the other hand apparently did not suspect such a thing for even one second.

    As I said: sounds very fishy.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to Steve The Cynic
    Steve The Cynic:
    [opinion]
    In retrospect, I wouldn't have acknowledged that I was snoofle, period. As I said, it caught me off guard. I'm one of those folks who always comes up with a snappy comeback - five hours later. Only once did I ever come up with the perfect response, and it turned out to absolutely be the wrong thing to say.
  • Vlad (unregistered)

    I wouldn't want to work for a company that would hire someone like me either.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to warlaan
    warlaan:
    Sorry, but this story sounds totally fishy to me. I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.

    And now there's a manager who reads TDWTF (strange but still believable), remembers the authors' pseudonyms and expects others to do so as well?

    Also: if anyone ever asked me about posts by "warlaan" I would be 90% sure that they already knew that that's my pseudonym. Snoofle on the other hand apparently did not suspect such a thing for even one second.

    As I said: sounds very fishy.

    Actually, this isn't the first interview on which I was asked about TDWTF (the first time was several years back). It was the followup question on snoofle that threw me; it was a little too close to home.

  • TheRider (cs) in reply to Vlad
    Vlad:
    I wouldn't want to work for a company that would hire someone like me either.
    ^^ this! +1
  • Not Snoofie (unregistered)

    Wow, you totally dodged a bullet there. If he was willing to resort to threats, no question he would be threatening you on a daily basis.

  • Nagesh (cs) in reply to balazs

    Nice tale.

  • ArrivingRaptor (cs) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    I'm in the .NET world so I'll use people from that as examples, but if you were interviewing somebody like Rob Conery or Scott Hanselman or Ayende Rahien, and they used some weird online handle, I wouldn't expect them to be tech'd when it was revealed who they were, because it's well known they know their stuff. The guy said that he knew "snoofle" knew his stuff from the posts, and didn't need to tech screen him. At that point he didn't know you were snoofle, so he had to have a way to vet your skills. You seem to have taken offense to the fact that he wouldn't have given a tech screen to you but hired you on the spot if you had said after asking him "I'm snoofle, glad you like my posts" or whatever, but I'm still failing to see why.
    I'm going to have to side with snoofle on this. The difference between the .Net luminaries you mentioned and anyone who writes for TDWTF is sort of like positive testing vs negative testing, positive in this case being "can you write code of value" and negative being "can you identify and fix what's wrong". Competence in one doesn't necessarily mean competence in the other, and it's the job of the manager to make sure the person he's hiring has competence in both.

    Plus, if he's willing to skip the tech interview for some guy who writes for a tech website, it leaves the question of what other parts of the interview he's willing to skip.

  • golddog (unregistered)
    snoofle:
    At the interview, I met some mid and senior level developers, and the team lead. They asked the usual technical, problem solving and how-would-you-x type of questions. I answered fairly well, and established a decent rapport while trading war stories. They seemed to feel the same way, as they grabbed the manager to chat with me afterward.

    I spent about 30 minutes answering higher level architectural, support and management type questions. Then he asked me something for which I was completely unprepared.

    I'm not sure how this doesn't qualify as being "tech'd out". It seems to me the technical team did the level of technical interview they felt they needed, and the manager (as is typically the case) was just doing a personality-fit sort of interview.

    I'd guess the technical team gave the few-minute thumbs-up-or-thumbs-down to the manager (up, obviously) who then went into his/her session having already felt the interviewee was technically capable.

    That being said, I could certainly see why someone (coincidental or not) happening to mention your online handle would throw you for a loop.

  • emaNrouY-Here (unregistered)

    The one thing I might have done differently is, instead of revealing myself at the interview, tell the agency you decline the offer and to notify the manager, "snoofle has declined the offer."

  • Dieter (unregistered)

    Yeah, I'm not often the sceptic online. But I'm gonna have to follow the other people above and call bullshit on this one...

  • ochrist (cs) in reply to warlaan
    warlaan:
    Sorry, but this story sounds totally fishy to me. I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.

    And now there's a manager who reads TDWTF (strange but still believable), remembers the authors' pseudonyms and expects others to do so as well?

    Also: if anyone ever asked me about posts by "warlaan" I would be 90% sure that they already knew that that's my pseudonym. Snoofle on the other hand apparently did not suspect such a thing for even one second.

    As I said: sounds very fishy.

    Maybe you need to frequent the Side Bar WTF more often?

  • Zylon (cs) in reply to warlaan
    warlaan:
    I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.
    Apparently you never read the comments either, because the identity of the author is quite often mentioned.
  • DV Henkel-Wallace (unregistered)

    This isn't the kind of story I come to DTWTF for but it was really useful.

  • Ben Jammin (unregistered)

    This may be insensitive of me, but I find it hilarious that the manager threatened to out Snoofle's name, as if that were any real threat.

    "You mean to tell me that Snoofle, a writer for TDWTF, is actually John Doe, a writer for TDWTF?!?"

    At this point Remy would look over to John Doe's with a stunned expression on his face. "OMG, You're Snoofle! I can't believe I've never knew."

    Crowds of admirers and reporters would be flocking behind him trying to get an accurate picture of Snoofle - behind the mask.

    The only way I could see this having any weight behind it is if Snoofle has other ventures in which he's widely, publicly known. "Larry the Cable Guy writes technical articles for a programmer's humor site in his spare time? Never saw that coming."

  • Ben Jammin (unregistered) in reply to Ben Jammin
    Ben Jammin:
    This may be insensitive of me, but I find it hilarious that the manager threatened to out Snoofle's name, as if that were any real threat.

    "You mean to tell me that Snoofle, a writer for TDWTF, is actually John Doe, a writer for TDWTF?!?"

    At this point Remy would look over to John Doe's with a stunned expression on his face. "OMG, You're Snoofle! I can't believe I've never knew."

    Crowds of admirers and reporters would be flocking behind him trying to get an accurate picture of Snoofle - behind the mask.

    The only way I could see this having any weight behind it is if Snoofle has other ventures in which he's widely, publicly known. "Larry the Cable Guy writes technical articles for a programmer's humor site in his spare time? Never saw that coming."

    whoa... I shouldn't type before coffee...

  • Nagesh (cs) in reply to HydroPeter
    HydroPeter:
    TRWTF is "I asked if I could use his PC to show him something, opened up a browser, went to TDWTF, logged in as snoofle and showed him." and "Trust Your Instincts"

    So why should one enter the username and password on a pc you don't trust belonging to a person/company you don't trust?

    Maybe he feel like bragging at the time. Everyone is loving Hero workshop.

  • Anon (unregistered)

    I would side with snoofle on this one. Imagine you were in the interview, were not snoofle, and the interview proceeded identically up to logging in as him.

    You'd just have been told that if an internet "celebrity" were interested in the job you'd get passed over without a second thought, despite you having proved you were fit for the job and had a solid rapport with the tech team. And without ascertaining that 'snoofle' knew what he was talking about. Would you really want to work for a manager that is more interested in how popular a person is than in how well they fit?

    It's funny because in this instance he was the celebrity in question, but it would be worrisome if he wasn't. He should have kept his anonymity, though, instead of proving he was snoofle. There wasn't really much point to it other than basking in adulation.

    As for whether the story is true or not, does it really matter? Saying "the story is fake" kind of kills the conversation right there. Even if you don't believe the story, discussing what happens in it is better than trying to pin down where it breaks from reality.

  • nonpartisan (cs) in reply to snoofle
    snoofle:
    ObiWayneKenobi:
    ...doubts...
    Or maybe I'd consider another job if it was "right". This guy tech'd me out. What bugged me was that he was willing to hire "snoofle" (when he didn't know it was me) without doing a tech out.
    But the fact is that he DID vet you. He didn't know he was vetting snoofle, but he did vet you. And I'd be willing to bet that, despite his claim, he would have had at least an informal chat with you prior to hiring. I think there was a bit of an overreaction on your part.
  • Matt Westwood (cs) in reply to warlaan
    warlaan:
    Sorry, but this story sounds totally fishy to me. I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.

    And now there's a manager who reads TDWTF (strange but still believable), remembers the authors' pseudonyms and expects others to do so as well?

    Also: if anyone ever asked me about posts by "warlaan" I would be 90% sure that they already knew that that's my pseudonym. Snoofle on the other hand apparently did not suspect such a thing for even one second.

    As I said: sounds very fishy.

    The difference here is that Snoofle writes stuff that people read and take note of, and remember his alias (there are others: C-Octothorpe and Frits come to mind, but come to think of it haven't seen them around for some time, oh and Blakeyrat whom I'd eject from the interview seat so fast he'd break the fucking sound barrier). Nobody knows who the fuck "warlaan" is.

  • stew (unregistered) in reply to ObiWayneKenobi

    Wait, so you're bothered that snoofle had an averse, "can't put my finger on it" instinctual reaction to the situation and declined the job, but see nothing wrong with the manager saying, "Actually, I'd hire this other person who I've never met and only know through anonymous internet posts over you even though you're obviously qualified, but since you're here and all...."

    And did you miss the part of the article where snoofle's instincts proved correct?

  • Paddles (cs)

    I think the advice about trusting your instincts is good (assuming you have built up some instincts, of course)... the times when I haven't trusted them have been, err, educational.

    That said, Snoofle's WTF of logging in as snoofle disturbed me on a couple of levels - the one not mentioned so far is the idea that Snoofle actually knows his password for TDWTF. Where's the password manager? (No, I wouldn't expect to see it in the story, but I would have expected it by now in the comments.)

  • yeah (unregistered)

    Regardless of whether snoofle overreacted at first, the fact that the hiring manager threatened to out him was the moment he was proved correct in his reaction.

    Let's pretend for a moment that the gambit worked. Exactly what kind of working relationship would this guy actually have with snoofle? He just tried to blackmail the guy! Who else is in that office under similar threat? What is it going to be like working with a person who demonstrates both a lack of ethics and a propensity to bully and use threats to get what he wants?

    Yeah, a wtf was snoofle outing himself, but Trwtf really is the scumbag hiring manager.

  • snoofle (cs) in reply to Paddles
    Paddles:
    ...Where's the password manager?...
    Just curious: why is not using a password manager a wtf? (I don't happen to use one at all; I use various formulas (that mean something to me) to construct a password - at work they're lame and very easy to type; for bank accounts they're fairly secure). If it matters, there have been a few attempts to hack my (personal) stuff over the years, but none were successful.
  • C-Derb (unregistered) in reply to Matt Westwood
    Matt Westwood:
    warlaan:
    I am a programmer and I frequently read TDWTF, but I never even looked at the pseudonym of the author.

    The difference here is that Snoofle writes stuff that people read and take note of, and remember his alias (there are others: C-Octothorpe and Frits come to mind, but come to think of it haven't seen them around for some time, oh and Blakeyrat whom I'd eject from the interview seat so fast he'd break the fucking sound barrier). Nobody knows who the fuck "warlaan" is.

    The only pseudonym I consistently recognize is Matt Westwood. When I see a string of F-words, I know whose comment I'm reading.

  • ForFoxSake (unregistered)

    Just when I thought the stories couldn't get any more fabricated. An lonely egocentric troll plays the pathetic card.

  • VeeTwo (unregistered)

    "manager's willingness to blindly hire an unknown entity"

    Isn't this an inherent risk of a growing company? Sooner or later you are going to have to hire someone you don't know. Even a friend of a friend has an element of 'unknown entity' in them. Sounds to me like snoofle was already through most of the interview by the time this question hit. I'm not sure you could do much to reduce the 'blindly hire' factor at this point.

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