The eagle eyed among you will have spotted that AccountingWEB.co.uk has a stateside doppelganger, AccountingWEB.com which provides accounting news, information, tips and tools to our US counterparts. This month, American accountants are turning their frowns upside down with pink slip parties for the newly redundant.
The pink slip is a euphemism for the US equivalent of a P45, and rather than dabbing their teary eyes with them, those who’ve just lost their job are partying like there’s no tomorrow – and why not? It’s not like they have to wake up for work in the morning!
“It may sound like a ‘misery loves company’ festival, but these parties are not really designed for commiseration. For the most part, they are a casual venue for recruiting or networking”, say our US colleagues. Job seekers are given name tags in one colour, while recruiters wear a different colour to avoid any awkwardness or hidden agendas in the room.
The Los Angeles Crescent Hotel is said to be the birthplace of pink slip parties, but since then the trend has spread as far and wide as Boston, San Francisco and Chicago.
Edwin Duterte has founded a company that specialises in these gatherings, called Pink Slip Mixers. The purpose, he told AccountingWEB.com, is for job seekers to network with each other, give tips on making a good impression, or spicing up a resume. Pink Slip Mixers use a large projection screen to display job needs and job leads.
"My biggest priority is to get more community interaction," said Duterte.
One recruiter regularly shows up at pink slip parties to collect CVs. Wendy Tuttle, Director of Management Placements at DD Factor says that each time she goes to a pink slip party, she has fewer and fewer jobs to fill, but she tries to focus on the positive.
"My view is, let's try and be as hopeful as we can. As word gets out, the candidate pool is going to become more interesting and diverse. It's not like a job fair, where someone is bumped along from recruiter to recruiter. It's not about resumes at all. It's about a connection."
Some hiring firms use it as a chance to cherry pick talent. "This is an opportunity to get A-list players in the market on your team”, said Stacy Lentz of Taylor Grey recruitment consultants.
Many of the venues are donated, while drinks companies sometimes donate beverages to be sold at reduced costs. Some pink slip parties charge entrance and donate the proceeds to charity, ensuring that not only are those who attend serious enough to pay to get in, but they are also helping others at the same time.
As someone who has been made redundant in the past, I think this is a brilliant idea and an extremely positive way to make the best of a bad situation. This is one US import we’d be delighted to have.
Check out the original US article here.