Empathy, the missing KPI of companies


I want to share a story with you.

When I was in New Zealand, I made few job interviews. The plan? I needed a job since I had decided to go back to Europe.

I had interviews from companies all over Europe, and I talked to different people: CMOs, Heads, CEOs and so on.

There was one interview with a German company. They are pretty big. I don’t name the company because I want to believe that what happened to me is not the standard.

First I talked with people from HR: they were nice, they explain to me the service, the growth plan, while we were waiting for the CMO to arrive. HR told me the CMO was quite new, he just joined the company few weeks before.  They made it clear it was a big guy. (HR: why should this be stated? To a guy like it doesn’t matter if he is god on earth; if you say this to someone like me, you are basically saying “prepare yourself, because he is going to be a total asshole”).

The CMO joined the conversation and I was immediately aware that the phone interview was going to end in the worst way possible. Why? He sounded like someone who don’t want to be in that room, with me, talking about future plans. He started saying “I don’t have much time for this” to which I answered “well, OK, you organized this interview”. He asked me about my current position, and then he said to tell him a bit about me.

So I started: I’m lucky enough to have done a lot of experiences around the world, and since I’m passionate by nature, I was telling him basically my story.

He stopped me and said: “yeah, yeah…but you know what? It still sounds off to me that you are changing your life and job so much”.


I looked Giulia, next to me.


I replied: “You know what? If you want to tell me something about my SEO skills or marketing skills, probably you can, since I respect your experience. But what I’m doing with my life, it’s NONE of your business, and what should sound off is you telling me this” .

He left the conversation.

HR came back to me. There was an awkward moment. They said: “yeah, sorry, he is new, and  he is under a lot of pressure….bye!” and they hung up.

What the hell just happened?


Anyway, I wrote immediately an email to HR saying: “I hereby withdraw my candidacy because I don’t want to work with a person like that, no matter who he is”.

They answered me back saying they were mortified and sorry, and they gave me a free account for their app for me to test it. (It made me laugh, because in that moment I would have only made bad publicity to them, so I don’t think it was a smart move, but I get their point).

WOW. What an experience.

But here is the thing. The same CMO who found “off” that I was changing job and life so often decided to go away from the company within 3 months from that job interview. Why? Because a better position was waiting for him.

Are you fuckin kidding me? Really? 


a) never become a CMO like that.

b) go ahead, do what you want, no matter the fuckers you will find in your way trying to spit on your dreams (without even knowing you)

c) Empathy is what companies are missing most of the time. You are looking for a marketer indeed, but first of all you are talking with a human being and chances are you don’t know anything about him/her. You cannot understand everything from a fuckin CV (CV are dead).

d) Companies should treat empathy as KPI. But I know companies are not ready yet for this.


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