Minnesota Headhunter FAQ’S For Candidates

The past weeks I have been speaking with a lot of Minnesota tech, data, digital and product pros and as part of our conversation I ask, “What do you want to know about me?” or “What would you have liked to known about me before this chat?”

I have been keeping track of the most asked questions and decided to create a FAQ’s about me:

Why “Minnesota Headhunter”?

When I started the blog in 2005 I was thinking of what to call it. This is what I am so I went with that as a name. That and DeBettignies is not easily said nor typed in a Google search.

How long have you been a tech recruiter, how did you get started?

How long… 20+ years. When the anniversary hit last year my non recruiter friends were all. “That’s awesome” and “keep going” while my recruiter friends were like, “WTH is wrong with you still doing this after all these years”.

How I got started… Fall of ’97 I answered a newspaper ad for a search firm. Since this was around the time Al Gore invented the Internet, I was not aware that the group had a really bad reputation. I worked there for 5 months before leaving. Essentially, I learned how to do the business the wrong way and figured it couldn’t be that hard to do it the right way.

Why are you still doing it after all this time?

I genuinely like people. I think we are amazing, fun, frustrating and complicated creatures. I like both “sides” of the recruiting process… I like helping people with their career path, find their passion and space. And I love helping clients build their teams. Filling one Dev role is OK but building a team of Dev’s, Designers and Data pros is the best kind of work for me.

Why should I talk with you, what makes you different than all the recruiters reaching out to me?

I’m very transparent. Sure, a client is paying me and I am looking out for their best interest. I also think it is my job to look out for yours. The last thing I want to do is to recruit someone out of one role and into another that is not in their best interest.

Who are you working with?

Today I am working with the Daugherty Business Solutions Minneapolis group recruiting roles that are open now, building candidate pools for future hiring and being an advocate for them in the tech community.

I also spend some time advising a few startups and small tech groups on recruiting process and strategy and long term sourcing of candidates for roles that will not be open for months.

Click Minneapolis and St Paul tech jobs for the roles I am recruiting for and some friends in town who are hiring.

What events do you attend?

It depends on who I am recruiting with… there are the “always attend events” like Minnebar (I speak every year), Minnedemo, Midwest JS, Twin Cities Startup Week (a big basket of events), DevOps Days. Then frequently attend the JavaScript, Ruby, DevOps, React, Hadoop meetups. Outside of tech I am at MIMA, SMBMSP and other events.

Can you code?

No. I know enough to do some things on the blog.

I’m not looking for a new role/company but I have a career question (salary, promotion, what should I be thinking about with my path)… might you have time to give me an opinion, some advice?

YES!!! I love those conversations.

When you’re not recruiting what do you do?

In the summer I love to spend time fishing… catching fish is a bonus. Being on a boat or dock for hours quiets my brain. I am a much better human during the summer. I love to ride a bike (trails in the city) and am a huge college football junkie.

You said at Minnebar you are an Introvert, is that true?

Oh my, yes. Sure, I am very active in the business and tech community, attend a lot of events and spend an obscene amount of minutes on my phone every day. I need… I have to have down time, quiet time. My friends know that after 10+ hours at Minnebar on a Saturday they will not hear from me until late Monday or mid Tuesday. I need to recharge.

Gopher football, how good are we going to be and do you really hate the Wisconsin Badgers?

I used to write, from a fans perspective, about Gopher football years ago and my do some again this year. Click Gopher Football for my recent post. I am going with 7-5 and win a bowl game. I’m cautiously optimistic that we take a step or two forward this year. As for the Badgers and the rivalry… it runs deep The University of Wisconsin is a great university. Madison is a great college town. But the Badgers, no way. I’ll leave it there.

A few photos:

 Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs    Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs 

Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs 

Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs  Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs 

Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Tech Jobs

Click Minnesota Headhunter for current blog posts and Minneapolis Tech Jobs for Minnesota IT jobs I am working on.

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Q&A With Minnesota Headhunter: An Intro To The Minnesota Startup And Tech Scene

Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minnesota Startups, Minnesota IT Jobs

As 2017 was winding down I was getting a number of inquiries about the Minnesota startup and tech scene from people outside Minnesota. I think the recruiting trip to Chicago, the Fly in Program during Twin Cities Startup Week and my own sourcing and recruiting is the cause of this. Most inquiries are coming from a few regions:

  • San Francisco and Silicon Valley
  • Chicago, Detroit… Midwest
  • Seattle
  • Austin and Dallas

And I have not yet put together a list of resources or guide to send them.

So… I’ll do a webinar and have about 45 minutes of content to share and then do Q&A for another 30 minutes or until everyone has the info they are looking for.

I’m still coming up with an agenda… so far something like this:

Continue reading "Q&A With Minnesota Headhunter: An Intro To The Minnesota Startup And Tech Scene" »

Minnesota Headhunter Chats With Chris Russell On The Rec Tech Podcast

Just before Labor Day I spent almost an hour chatting with Chris Russell for his Rec Tech Podcast. Chris and I have been long time followers of each other professionally and also of our fishing escapades. Chris is very active in the HR tech, startup and recruiting app space and is someone to follow.

You can find him on RecTech Media, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

We covered a lot of ground ranging from #LakeLife to the Minnesota tech scene to recruiting and more:

Continue reading "Minnesota Headhunter Chats With Chris Russell On The Rec Tech Podcast" »

Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #3


Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota IT Jobs


2 newsletters in 1 month… I’m on a roll.

This one was sent out last Friday, July 14th.

You can view the email version by clicking Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #3 or below in a simple text format. Want to sign up for it? Of course you do… at the bottom of this post is a sign up box.

Thanks for reading…

Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter v3

Friends and Colleagues,

Good Morning and let's start with the obvious... no, I didn't create a new newsletter format and yes, I am still using this MVP (Minimum Viable Product). Good news is most of you seem to be OK with my "minimalist" approach for now.

In this issue I will be talking about:

- Midwest Recruiting Bootcamp

- MinneDemo

- Tech hiring in Minneapolis/St Paul and the Midwest

- Online Chat: Managing your tech and startup career

- Job search webinar

Continue reading "Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #3" »

Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #2


Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Minnesota IT Jobs

Why is it so hard to hit “send”?

I sent an email newsletter out this morning and felt a knot in my stomach as I did it. It’s been a long time since I sent one… 3 years. And back then I only sent one. Yeah, my email newsletter game has sucked.

But I am on it now.

Good news is the open rate and click through’s are high. Labeled as Spam is 0. Unsubscribes are higher than average but given the length of time since some would have signed up… I’m OK enough with it.

You can view it by clicking Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #2 or below in a simple text format. Want to sign up for it? Of course you do… at the bottom of this post is a sign up box.

Thanks for reading…


Continue reading "Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter #2" »

Event: How to Use Social Media Tools for Recruiting

Minnesota Magazine & Publishing Association, Recruiter & HR Speaker

Next month (August 13, 2015) I will be speaking at the Minnesota Magazine & Publishing Association on “How to Use Social Media Tools for Recruiting.

While most of my presentations and speaking engagements tend to be in front of Recruiter, HR, Tech groups and private companies the past months the number of inquiries from associations and professional groups is on the rise.

Accounting, finance, marketing are examples and yes magazine publishers too. I’m guessing that is in response to their membership asking for experts to talk with them about the “War for Talent” and the “Skills Shortage”… most companies to some degree are finding it difficult to hire who they are looking for.

I look forward to sharing the tools I use and how I am helping startups and small tech companies compete with the “big” companies in town.

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Call Me… I’m Never Too Busy

Call Paul DeBettignies

I have had what started as a couple, and now grown to quite a few, comments the past months similar to:

  • We had some recruiting we needed help with and knowing how busy you are we called someone else

  • We have been Twitter friends since 2009 and when I needed some advice on my last job search I wanted to reach out to you but I know how busy you are

  • I wanted to bring you in and talk to our executive team about how you use different tools for recruiting but I saw your calendar on the blog and I didn’t think you would have time for us so I didn’t contact you

Continue reading "Call Me… I’m Never Too Busy" »

Join The Minnesota Headhunter Group On LinkedIn

Minnesota Headhunter, Minnesota Recruiter, Paul DeBettignies

I’m not a New Year’s Resolution kind of guy, I do a theme, but I usually have a couple of “things” I want to get done in the next year.

Thinking about 2015 one of those “things” is to help my friend’s network with each other.

I’ve had a number of conversations the past months where someone said something like:

I was having an issue with a non compete and I ended up with some bad advice.

    • And I was thinking if I had known I would have sent them to Teresa Thompson (disclaimer, she’s my wicked smart attorney).

My sister was looking for a senior level position with Minnesota non profit or community organization.

    • And I was thinking if I had known I would have sent them to Lars Leafblad.

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ToggleGreen Adds Paul DeBettignies To Its Advisory Board

This spring (2014) I was contacted by Mike Stapp to talk about a startup he was working on. We were both working out of CoCo so getting together was easy. Mike walked me through his idea and I was intrigued.

Over the summer Mike’s idea took off and he was busy getting the product put together. I was busy working, fishing and sitting on a dock.

We reconnected this fall when Mike invited me to his office for a quick chat.

That lasted nearly two hours.

Mike walked me through the idea of ToggleGreen and I was jacked up about it. He asked if I would have interest in being on the ToggleGreen advisory board and I don’t think he finished asking the question before I said yes.

So what is ToggleGreen?

The test market is Minnesota IT and creative consultants, contractors and full time employees and the recruiters and companies looking to hire/employ them.

Continue reading "ToggleGreen Adds Paul DeBettignies To Its Advisory Board" »

Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter: 1st Edition

The past weeks I have been doing A LOT of things I had been thinking about doing for a long time… I can check “newsletter” off the list.

Last week I sent out the newsletter below to many, many people.

As usual my “fear” of folks being annoyed was not realized. I have 2.5x number of email asking why I had not been doing this as I do who marked it as “Spam”.

So far it has a 31% Open Rate and 1.2% Opt Out.

Here is a link that should open it in a web browser:

Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter: 1st Edition

To sign up for the newsletter:

Newsletter Sign Up



Here is the simple text version (no columns and no photos):

Friends and Colleagues,

Continue reading "Minnesota Headhunter Newsletter: 1st Edition" »

Paul DeBettignies Interview On Drive ThruHR

Paul DeBettignies, Minnesota Recruiter









Drive ThruHR is hosted by William Tincup (@williamtincup), Bryan Wempan (@bryanwempen) and Nisha Raghaven (@thehrbuddy) and every day during the lunch hour (Noon CT) for 30 or so minutes they speak with someone in the HR and Recruiter space.

Last week I was a guest and had a fun conversation with William.

Some of the topics we covered:

Continue reading "Paul DeBettignies Interview On Drive ThruHR" »

Event: Social Media – Best Practices for Maintaining an Optimal Online Presence

University of St Thomas Alumni Association

The is co sponsoring an event “Social Media – Best Practices for Maintaining an Optimal Online Presence” and invited me to be the presenter.

I am a big, BIG fan of St Thomas, their staff and alumni and love speaking at their events.

Below is information (note there are two events) and no, you do not need to be a grad of St Thomas or a member of the alumni association to attend.

Register (click the link)

Continue reading "Event: Social Media – Best Practices for Maintaining an Optimal Online Presence" »

Minnesota Morning: Minnesota Headhunter LLC Is One Year Old

Downtown Minneapolis

It’s Friday evening December 20th, 2013 and all day something has been bothering me… like I knew I was forgetting about something important.

That nagging feeling.

Most of the work stuff was done. Holiday activities taken care of. End of the week email sent out.

And then it hit me while I was pulling up the blog and looking out the window…

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Working Wednesday… Minnesota Jobs In Technology

For a long, long, long time I have wanted to start a job board to help support the local tech community. Tech defined as IT, Med, Bio, Science, etc.

For whatever reason I never get around to it in part because I do not know what the demand is, will be. I think I know it but then never follow through with it to find out.

Silly, right? Welcome to my world of 15 ideas and not trying 1 of them.

I already own the domain names necessary to do it and/or could just add another page here on the blog.

So here goes my 1st attempt at seeing if there is a need for such a thing.

On Wednesday’s (starting tomorrow and I know this is not a lot of notice) I am going to do this as a blog post here on the main page.

Here is what I am looking for... jobs in:

- IT (developers, programmers, help desk, Big Data, etc.) any kind of company

- Med, Bio and Science companies who have any kind of jobs (Robotics, Project Managers, Marketing, Sales, Executive, Customer Service, HR, etc.)

Continue reading "Working Wednesday… Minnesota Jobs In Technology" »