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Chatbots Are Back!

If you’re tired of hearing about ChatGPT, employers and vendors behaving badly, money-grubbing startups, and millions being made on OnlyFans, then maybe this episode isn’t for you. But in the likely chance that these topics are just what the doctor ordered, Chad & Cheese cover:

Feel free to hold us in contempt of court, counselor!

Intro: Hide your kids, lock the doors, you're listening to HR's most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheesman are here to punch the recruiting industry right where it hurts. Complete with breaking news, brash opinion and loads of snark. Buckle up boys and girls, it's time for The Chad & Cheese Podcast.

Joel: Oh, yeah, it's Eiffel Tower Day, so let's protest pensions, burn some trash and throw out Macron. Hi kids, you're listening to The Chad & Cheese Podcast. This is your co-host, Joel Fromage Cheesman.

Chad: Chad Sugarhill Gang Sowash.

Joel: And on this week's show, ChatGPT marches on, buy or sell and deal gets naughty.

Speaker 4: What are you doing step bro?


Joel: Let's do this.


Chad: There it is. That's what I'm talking about. And in 1980... When was this? This was like maybe '70s.

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: I can't remember.

Joel: Yeah, I need my knee-high aluminum boots.


Joel: And a nice rainbow jacket for this. Jeez, why are we playing that to start the show Chad?

Chad: As we've been doing the European show, we start to understand the big differences between the US and Europe, it's not just the distance from across the pond. We were recently on Adway's show with Sara Dalsfelt. Anyway, she's in love with Swedish House Mafia, so I posed the question on LinkedIn, who is better, Swedish House Mafia, Jam Master Jay, Spinderella or Grandmaster Flash? And the Europeans had a shit fit, they just automatically were in the Swedish House Mafia EDM crew. And it was amazing because the Sugarhill Gang and Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, they evolved music, right?

Joel: Yeah, yeah.

Chad: Swedish House Mafia is great, I like listening to them, but they're not evolutionary at all. And as I was starting to think about this, I was like, this is a metaphor for the HR and recruiting industry, especially in tech. 'Cause there's some great tech platforms that are out there, some good tech platforms, but very, very few of them are evolutionary.

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: And I wanted to play Grandmaster Flash, so that's why we did it.

Speaker 5: Europe has a bunch of countries in it.

Joel: Next on CNN, Viking longboats sailing down the Ohio River to Columbus...


Joel: To a pillage the Sowash aboard. Nice, piss off the Swedes. That's always fun.

Chad: I can't wait.

Joel: And by the way, I'm glad that you offered me up for more Surströmming without my approval. Those that don't know, Surströmming is one of the nastiest things that you can eat.

Chad: [laughter] It is fucking horrible.

Joel: Rotted fish. It's apparently some Scandinavian delicacy and it's horrible. Google it, watch it on YouTube if you wanna learn more. But Chad has offered me up again.

Chad: [laughter] They call it a delicacy, so dumbasses like us go and eat it. Oh, this is a delicacy? Oh, yeah. Put it on a plate.

Joel: Yeah, yeah.

Chad: Until they open the fucking can and they clear out an entire restaurant. [laughter]

Joel: Yeah, when you have to open something under water because the smell is so bad, you don't want it to like totally...

Chad: It was bad, man.

Joel: Burn the nostrils of everyone within 10 feet of it.

Chad: And you were right there. I was 20 feet away.

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: I could smell it 20 feet away. And we were outside kids.

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: We were outside. Anyway...

Joel: Yeah, my first clue was asking a dozen Swedes if they've ever done it and they were like, "Hell, no, we've never done that shit."


Joel: That shit is awful, man. Awful.

Chad: Yeah, so hopefully we'll be back in Sweden sometime soon, so that you can have more Surströmming, I can have a dance-off and we can play some Swedish House Mafia and some Grandmaster Flash. So, there you have it.

Joel: Yeah. Although Sarah is moving to London, I believe.

Chad: Okay.

Joel: So, we'll change it to fish and chips. I much prefer fish and chips to rotted fish in a can, shit, that was stored back in the fucking Cold War era.

Chad: All right, shout-outs.

Joel: Shout-outs, Rupert Murdoch, Chad.

Chad: Oh my god.

Joel: Your favorite media mogul.

Chad: What a fucking asshole.

Joel: Get a load of this.

Chad: Thanks, Australia.

Joel: Yeah, Rupert Murdoch is getting married for the fifth time.

Chad: God.

Joel: To 66-year-old Ann Lesley Smith, a former model, and just one year younger than Murdoch's oldest child. The pair met in September last year following his August divorce from Jerry Hall after six years of marriage. If you're keeping score, Chad, that's six months between marriages. I guess when you're 92 years old like Rupert Murdoch is, turnaround time takes a whole new meaning. Shout-out to Rupert and marriage number five. You'd think at 92 years old he would have learned his lesson, but apparently not.

Chad: He has a penchant for models, by the way, if you take a look at his divorcees.

Joel: Jerry Hall famously married to Rolling Stones lead singer Mick Jagger. Yes.

Chad: Annulled. Yes, but annulled.

Joel: Oh, was it annulled? I don't know.

Chad: Yeah, it was annulled.

Joel: I don't know. And she was in Playboy in the '80s, I think. I think I remember her from that.

Chad: So anyway, to people who really matter, shout-out to Bradley DiPaolo over at CandidateHub. Apparently on road trips, Bradley loves the soft and melodic tones of The Chad & Cheese Podcast in his ears, or at least that's what he's saying on social media. So, thanks for listening, Bradley. We love your brother, keep sharing.

Joel: [chuckle] We look good on a big screen in a car, by the way. We look good on a big-ass.

Chad: We do, it's sexy. Yeah.

Joel: Yeah, it is sexy. I'm glad we selected the yellow, somehow that pops really nicely on our logo.


Joel: All right, shout-out to Leverage. Chad.

Chad: Ooh.

Joel: This is from Fortune Magazine.

Chad: Leverage.

Joel: Despite recent efforts by employers to take back some of the bargaining power from employees, recruiting professionals predict that talent will continue to have leverage for the next five years. Fortune says this means Employers cannot low-ball candidates and must offer excellent compensation and benefits to remain competitive. In addition, DEI remains a priority for candidates and businesses will be held accountable for their societal promises. Shout out to Leverage and let the good times roll for our industry as vendors look to cash in over the next five years, at least.

Chad: It'll go longer than that because salary transparency is actually what's forcing this shit, kids, recruiting experts. What the fuck ever shout-out to RecruitX, it's official kids RecruitX just announced to their customers that "Google job ads are finally here. This new long awaited product offers employers, the opportunity to dynamically advertise specific jobs in the most premium inventory Google offers via a feed of your jobs." Why is this important for hiring companies, because "Up to 73% of job-seekers start their job search on Google as the touch point to find employment, Google is an operating system, it's a lifestyle platform, all of the things that indeed will never be." Shout-out to RecruitX and Google for Jobs, paid ads, going into beta sometime soon.

Speaker 6: That escalated quickly.

Joel: Yes, and we've been talking about it, and we've seen screenshots, but it looks like it's official, which to me means Google is reaching out to these agencies and talking about, "Hey, we're coming into beta, let's get some of your best clients testing this thing." We talked recently on a show to tease a future episode about how Google is gonna make enough money to justify doing this thing, they can only go to so many LinkedIns and zip recruiters to get some low-hanging fruit. They're gonna have to build some bridges to the biggest agencies, biggest companies in the world, if they're gonna turn this into a billion-plus dollar business, clearly, they're starting to do that, they're doing the right thing, they're calling agencies, I'm sure they're calling all of them to get those budgets switched over and with all the fuck ups that Indeed has been having lately shooting itself in the foot. I'm sure more than enough agencies and clients are more than happy to explore Google as an alternative to Indeed. Timing is great on this one, timing is great.

Chad: It is. Lucky and great.

Joel: That's right. Shout-out to Bosko Vujatovic.

Chad: Bosko?

Joel: I think I said that right. This is via LinkedIn, super fan Bosko, while posting a pic in his new Chad and Cheese t-shirt. So damn sexy. He posts, "My wife bewildered says, some podcaster sent you a t-shirt? And they talk about recruiting? And you like it?" His reply. "Love it." And we love you to Bosko of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This shout-out is for you, my man, and keep listening on and looking sexy as you do.

Chad: Looking good.

Joel: In that Chad and Cheese T-shirt.

Chad: It's very slimming too. Joel has is on. It's very slimming. Big, nice, warm, comfy.

Joel: We picked the dark hues for the T-shirt. There's a really good reason. By the way, just like Bosko, you too can be stylish in a Chad and Cheese T-shirt, but you gotta go to Click the free link, click t-shirts, put in your information, t-shirts from JobGet, we got beer from our friends at Aspen Tech Labs, we have bourbon from our homies at TextKernel, and if it's your birthday in a certain month, you might win a nice bottle of rum from our friends at Plum. But you gotta win it. You gotta be in it to win it. Or something like that, you gotta go to

Chad: Register.

Joel: Click the free link and register.

Chad: Come on people. Events, kids. That's right, we have Unleash coming up tickets. Get your tickets. That's right. Wait, wait, wait. Wait, wait, listener, listener, you don't have your tickets to Unleash yet? Are you serious? Are you fucking kidding me? At Caesars Forum in Vegas, late April, you've got some time. It's coming up fast, so get your damn tickets. We're gonna be on stage with Chris Conrad from Textkernel, our buddies over there. During the vendor summit and our dance card is just about full with dinners, drinks, parties, including a little private soiree with our friends over at Plum. And then there's a Chad and Cheese, the drinks are on Tadio listener events that we're looking to put together.

Joel: Nice.

Chad: Talent toke with our boy Evan White, who is an event genius, get this, we're gonna be... We're gonna watch the Bellagio fountains while we're getting high, yes kids. Weed is legal in Vegas. Also, I think we're going to be making an appearance at one of the bars inside of the high roller, it's that big ferris wheel that's right in front of the Caesars Forum. I think we're gonna spend a half hour in there, possibly do whatever we can. Shots, half an hour. Who knows? But anyway, we're gonna have a blast. That's Unleash. And you haven't been up in the project, have you?

Joel: I have not. It seems like a trap like open bar for 60 minutes in a glass, a glass egg.

Chad: It's only 30 minutes.

Joel: It seems very dangerous. It seems very... Okay 30 minutes, I guess I can deal with that. Talent toke.

Chad: Yes.

Joel: Talent toke. Yeah, that's gonna be interesting.

Chad: It's gonna be a blast.

Joel: Are cameras allowed in this event, 'cause I could see a...

Chad: It's gonna be outside.

Joel: That the authorities... I can see the authorities tracking those of us in non-legal states, and by the way, our travel is powered by our friends at Shaker, folks find out more at

Chad: And then we go to iCIMS, I'm pretty excited about this event, we're going to be on stage closing out day one with a half-hour session during our prelim tech check yesterday, we made it pretty clear that we wanted to be drinking on stage because we knew right after that we have the expo, and we have drinks, but yeah, I'm pretty excited about that, if you don't have tickets to any of the events, we have got plenty others that are happening. Go to, click on the events in the upper right hand corner and register for them all.

Joel: And we have got discounts for some of them.

Chad: And we have got discounts.

Joel: This is fucking Group on it, Chadcheese.

Chad: Oh yeah.

Joel: It's good stuff. Good stuff.

Chad: It's Groupon.

Speaker 7: Really. Can you feel the tension in the air right now?

Chad: I can.

Speaker 7: I know I can, I can feel it all the way down in my plums.

Joel: Oh, yeah, Chad. You know what that means? We got birthdays to celebrate.

Speaker 8: Happy birthday.

Joel: Another trip around the sun for some our favorite listeners, Megan Sharp, Dan Cheeseman, no relation whatsoever.

Chad: Really.

Joel: Believe it or not, and he spells his name incorrectly, so we're not... We're not related. James Holloman. Hallow Balliger. Thomas Ohero, Simon Evans, Robert Omarwa, Tod henford, Derik Christiansten, Nate Menard, Elan Oberg. Martinzen, one of our favorite streets speaking event, celebrates their birthday. And Last, but definitely not least.

Chad: Yes.

Joel: Jeremy Cheeseman, turns six years old.

Chad: Six. Holy shit.

Joel: Six years old this week, ironically the same age as our podcast, it coincides with my last and final child that I will put on this earth. That is birthdays. Thanks for listening and enjoy your special day this week.

Speaker 8: Happy birthday.

Joel: Topics. Layoffs. I think we have a lay-off alert Chad that came across the wire today as we were creating notes for the show, what's up?

Chad: At just laid off about 80 people, equaling about 25% of its workforce. I was amazed that most of these arbitrage players, they're not innovating at all. We talked about this with music earlier, how can these companies actually separate themselves from the Indeeds of the world as opposed to just doing the same shit and feeding each other. Right? And you got to ask, "What do companies want?" They want qualified candidates, so how can companies like send more quality? That's the problem they should be solving for that Indeed is not solving for. We're seeing that now Indeed is all over the fucking place, it's almost like vendors are fat and happy just drafting off of indeed. So I don't know, what do you think?

Joel: I think if we believe Indeed is scared about Google and Google monetizing, think about what is thinking internally about this development, it's hard, it's the game of spend money, and hopefully you're spending less than what you're getting in clicks or postings or fees or whatever, banner ads that you have on the site, and it's a game of arbitrage, and it's very, very difficult, and as companies pay less per click in some industries, certainly tech has fallen off in I think the last news that I read was 300,000 tech jobs have been lost in the last year, that's a lot of... Those are high priced clicks, and all that revenue is stagnant right now with these companies, and that leads to layoffs 'cause they have to save money if they can't make money, and you're seeing a lot of layoffs, this I think was 20%, you said 80 or so employees?

Chad: 25. Yeah. 25.

Joel: Okay. So they're pretty lean organization to their credit.

Chad: Yes. Yes.

Joel: So that's the good news. But yeah, it's a tough business. It always has been, always will be.

Chad: Well, we did... A little teaser, we did talk to Michael Woodrow earlier this week, and he doesn't think that there's gonna be any arbitrage game off of Google because Google is so expensive, so it's gonna be a big change, I think, for the industry, and we really have to stop thinking about traffic, and we have to start thinking about targeted qualified individuals, that's more important than quantity.

Joel: Yeah. At the end of the day, a brand matters, and Indeed early on got all their traffic from search SEO, and when that dried up, they built a brand, they spent money on ads, and because of that they're well known. I've never seen a ad, I've never seen a Jobcase ad. A lot of these companies that are looking to make a big dent in this game, aren't spending the money to build a brand to where they can leverage that and grow off of it, even in bad times, so until I see some of that stuff, these guys are sort of fringe businesses. Anyway. Let's talk a little ChatGPT, Chad.

Chad: Everybody is.

Joel: Because it's in the news, believe it or not.

Chad: Go figure.

Joel: And a few things here. A new Korn Ferry survey says 46% of professionals are currently using ChatGPT as part of their daily work, what's more Open AI announced a product extension for ChatGPT allowing the chatbot to interact with external data and services. With plugins ChatGPT now can search for real-time information on the web, order groceries from DoorDash and book flights, hotels or rental cars on KAYAK. One expert believes plugins have transformed ChatGPT into an app platform that could challenge the iPhone in the not so distant future.

Joel: Beamery has launched TalentGPT to generate new job descriptions and generative AI reported more than 200 new AI tools were released just last week, including ChatBotkit, which says it's the fastest way to make your own advanced chatbot. Chad. It's ChatGPT's world. We're all just renting. What are your thoughts?

Chad: Dharmesh Shah, the founder of HubSpot, just announced that he bought for over $10 million with his own money, by the way, apparently he didn't have enough planes and Yachts. But he bought He didn't buy a Right?

Joel: It's conversational.AI.

Chad: Yes, no, so I mean, it's one of those things where this is incredibly important, Google just reshuffled their virtual assistant unit and they're focusing more on the barred AI side of the house, as we're talking about the Beamery's, we're talking about all of the companies out there. This is gonna be a me to effect. Everybody's gonna do it. And I think what you're talking about with regard to the app extensions, that to me is pretty amazing. Just to be able to point at data sets that you want to train ChatGPT off of, I think is incredibly smart. But here's the thing, is everything gonna get paused?

Chad: So a story in Gadget yesterday, an open letter signed by tech leaders and prominent AI researchers has called for AI labs and companies to immediately pause their work, signatories like Steve Wozniak and Elon Musk agrees risks warrant a minimum six month break from producing technology beyond GPT-4. Allow people to adjust and ensure they are benefiting everyone. So do we need a break? Is this happening too fast?

Joel: We need a break is like telling someone to put the toothpaste back into the bottle. [laughter] I don't see how you put the genie back again on this one. I mean, unless you have some serious, global government regulation around the processes and investment that's going into this. I mean, by and large, most people haven't been excited as excited about a new technology, since maybe mobile. I mean, almost a decade. Web3...

Chad: IPhone.

Joel: Is kinda, eh, VR, AR, that's sort of stalled, for sure. [laughter] So I mean, the talk of like AI is the most dangerous thing that we face right now, is it makes great headlines. But I don't know how you put that genie back in the bottle. I do love also the Korn Ferry 46%, of professionals are using ChatGPT I posted that on LinkedIn and I was shocked at the pushback on that. Like people were Pitchforks, Korn Ferry's bullshit.

Joel: Yeah. Right. Okay. Does thou protest too much? I mean, [laughter] I bet if you look really deep into some of these people, they either work for a company that's threatened by ChatGPT or AI, or have something to lose. This thing has been around just since November of last year, and it's penetrated the zeitgeist of everyone. I think we can agree that this is a force to be reckoned with, whether you're mad about it or not. I think also the amount of apps and integrations that we're seeing...

Chad: That's powerful.

Joel: To me, you're looking at, people question how this is gonna auto... Or how this is gonna monetize. Don't think Google, think AWS. These guys are gonna power much of the internet in just a few short years probably anyone that has a software is gonna have to plug this in, in some form or fashion, and they're gonna get a tax for all that data that comes in and out of these sites. So to me it's a juggernaut in terms of monetization. I got the Bard, Google Bard invite, this week. So I've been kind of playing around with that.

Joel: I still think that OpenAI has a more robust product at this point, but it's really early and there's gonna be a lot of money thrown at this space. So it's just really exciting. I like talking about it. I think, Beamery, we talked about Hireology, those are two press releases that said they were the first to integrate this stuff [laughter] So how many more first PR we're gonna see, will be fun. Get it out there fast kids, 'cause it will ultimately, you won't be the first after 10 or 12 firsts, that come across the wire. But exciting stuff as always. And we'll like talking about it.

Chad: Again, it's a me too conversation, but this around for the most part is, is general the generative AI side of the house. It's large language models. In most cases, what our practitioners are gonna care about the most is domain specific models. Ones who have been training on domain specific data for a very long time. So we just need to educate and help those companies, those practitioners better understand what they should be looking for, what problem they're trying to solve. Because in many cases, if it is just a general, we want to get a thanks, but no thanks letter out there. Fuck ChatGPT will do that in seconds.

Joel: Yes, it will. Oh shit, Chad, that's the bell. You know what that means? Time to play a little buy or sell.

Chad: Buy or sell.

Joel: Our listeners that don't know, we talk about three companies that have recently gotten funding. Read a summary and then Chad and I will either buy or sell the company. Are you ready to play, buy or sell?

Chad: Yes.

Joel: First up, we have Paraform San Francisco's Paraform has raised $1.4 million in Pre-seed funding. Paraform has developed a marketplace format enabling tech companies to post bounties for open roles with anyone able to profit if they refer a successful candidate. Although 90% of its users are currently professional recruiters, Paraform plans to expand to all professionals in the near future. Chad, are you a buy or sell on Paraform?

Chad: All is, old becomes new again. How many systems have we seen over the years that have been focused on bounties that have just miserably died very, very quickly? I mean, it's crazy. The timing here really sucks. And only experienced veterans in the space could actually pull this off. So at the end of the day, it's a timing thing. It's an experience thing. It's an easy sell.

Joel: Oh, that's a sell from Chad. All right. Yeah. H3 came to mind when I first heard it. Like, everybody can refer everybody's a recruiter. And H3 was a great technology. I actually got paid, back in '05, '06, when I referred people and it didn't work out. And this was like great, great executives, good technology. And it didn't work. Talking to Hans, which we both know was CEO of the company, he thought maybe social media and the evolution of social media might change it.

Joel: Maybe Mobile will change how we refer jobs. It just doesn't work out for whatever reason. People don't just... People don't wanna be recruiters who aren't recruiters. People don't wanna just like shotgun job postings across social media. That's not cool. So it just seems to fall flat every time. And then you look at, "Well, okay, maybe it can just be like a recruiter thing," but then you've got bounty jobs, scout, talent drop. Like there's so many like companies that do this, that are much more well established. Is your differentiator that we target startups? Like I don't think that's a long-term business plan.

Chad: No.

Joel: So yeah, for me as well, like... [laughter] It's a sell. All right. Let's get to, Workera. Palo Alto's Workera has raised $23.5 million in a series B round. This brings total funding to forty-four and a half million dollars. Workera says it enables organizations to develop their talent by providing a deep understanding of their employees skills. Workera will use the funding to expand its comprehensive ontology of over 7,000 skills including soft skills assessments, and to develop more frequent skill check-ins for ongoing workforce measurement. Chad, buy or sell Workera?

Chad: So actually giving your employees the skills and paths to better paying jobs has actually did become important. Again. Can you believe that shit? Go figure. Remember when it was last important. When it was one of the only ways companies could receive tax writeoffs. That's when it was really popular. We had an incredibly skilled workforce because companies had to either pay taxes on those dollars or develop their employees. And that stopped in the '80s with trickle down bullshit economics. And ever since then, we started to hear about this new thing.

Chad: It's not really a new thing anymore. But that thing is called a skills gap. And every single year it's grown and grown and grown. Now companies have no fucking choice, but to look at the skills gap as a problem and institute upskilling quickly. Attrition rates are higher because we're not helping employees build their skill sets, find other internal jobs and stay. An internal Amazon report demonstrated that through attrition they had lost $9 billion. Upskilling is a huge wave that I am on, and if companies, practitioners don't get on it, they're gonna fucking drown. This is a buy for me.


Joel: Nice, nice, nice.

Speaker 6: 60% of the time it works [laughter] every time.

Joel: So talent intelligence is a really competitive space for a reason. This business is very complicated to me. It's a lot of pie charts and graphs, a lot of mumbo jumbo, psycho babble. But I understand people that want that. It works at least 60% of the time. So you've got Plum, you've got Eightfold, Gloat, you've got a ton of money in this space. I love surfing a big wave, which makes it really hard to not buy this company. Unless this whole space does become psycho babble bullshit and they all burn, in their own feces then there are gonna be a lot of winners in this space work.

Joel: Workera's CEO has a really nice resume. He's got Stanford, he was a founding member of DeepLearning.AI and he has pretty easy access to some pretty deep pockets. So for that reason and more, I'm also gonna buy Workera. All right, let's get to Payday. It's not just a great candy bar, Chad. [laughter] They've raised $3 million in a seed round. Payday offers African remote workers and freelancers the ability to send and receive money in dollars, euros, pounds, and 20 other currencies. This brings total funding to $5.1 million. The company has grown its user base and transaction volume significantly since its June, 2021 launch, ending last year with over 100,000 users, which has since grown to more than 300,000 users. Chad, buy or sell Payday.

Chad: So today more than 60% of Africa's population is under the age of 25. By 2030, young Africans are expected to constitute 42% of global youth. Africa is the future. Paying people is the future. Having infrastructure to do so is the future. Payday obviously is the future in this case. And as you talked about, 100,000 to 300,000, pretty easy, easy traction for them. So Payday has already smartly turned down an acquisition set at $15 million because I believe, by the end of next year, they could get 100 times that. It's a buy for me.


Joel: Yes. Chad, who is in Africa this week? Vice President Kamala Harris. And what is our vice president's visit to Africa signal? It signals a shit ton of money that's gonna be going into Africa. Even mentioning it in her speeches saying that we're gonna get rich and you guys are gonna get rich and not, I'm paraphrasing, but you get the idea. China's in Africa in a big way.

Chad: Yes.

Joel: Capital, European capital pouring into the country. These guys are gonna have to work not to be successful. They're gonna have to work at fucking this up. Capital's gonna flow. People are gonna get paid. Money is gonna need to flow in a lot of different directions in a lot of different currencies. So yeah, for me, like this is, they're gonna have... They're gonna have to work to fuck this up. This is a screaming buy for me from Payday. Let's take a quick break.


Joel: Listen to some smooth hip hop. And when we get back, a little naughty Chad. [laughter]


Joel: Uh-oh, companies have been naughty, Chad.

Chad: Go figure.

Joel: Naughty. Naughty. All right. Deel, that's D-E-E-L.

Chad: Damn it. I like those guys.

Joel: The $12 billion startup in our space has been accused by some of its workers of potentially misclassifying them as independent contractors. At least half of the company's 2000 workers worldwide are classified as independent contractors and some are concerned about their labor rights and missing out on benefits. Of course, Deel insists that it complies with relevant labor laws and empowers workers. Meanwhile, Chad, over at one of my favorites.

Speaker 9: Oh my God, I love Chipotle. Chipotle is my life.

Joel: That's right. Chipotle's been ordered to pay $240,000 to ex-employees at a Maine location that tried to unionize. Despite denying wrongdoing, the settlement falls short of reopening the closed location, but former employees will receive between $5,800 to $21,000 and be put on a preferential hiring list for one year. Chipotle also agreed to post notices at 40 stores saying they won't discriminate based on union support. Only one Chipotle location has successfully unionized so far. Chad, we got naughty, naughty from Deel and Chipotle, what's your take?

Chad: Yeah. A quote, in an article about Deel is how can you trust a vendor to help you [laughter] be compliant that aren't compliant themselves? [laughter] I mean, and it's eating your own dog food kind of thing. It's like, "Oh, we can help you do X, Y, and Z." Well, shit, you're getting dinged for it yourself. This is amateur hour kids. I mean, it feels like Deel is really just trying to fool the system like Uber and Lyft has for years.

Chad: It's not about freedom to choose, especially here in the US. It's about a company's opportunity to cut costs by not providing employee benefits. The CEO saying, that he's listed as a contractor is like Chris Heim saying stupid shit like he'll cut his salary by 25%. Dude, you're making a shit ton more cash than your employees. This is a total, let them make cake moment. When I read this, I was mad because I think platforms like Deel and Remote, I mean, there are plenty of them. Atlas. I mean, there's some great EOR opportunities that are out there, but this is a huge, huge strike for Deel. If they were in the RFP process for me right now, they would automatically be out.

Joel: Yeah. Yeah. I agree. It's funny you mentioned, Mr. Heims. I don't know if it's public or not. Somebody told me he makes $14 million.

Chad: SEC filings. Yeah, total comp.

Joel: Yeah. That'll buy a lot of beer. So good for you for taking that pay cut buddy.

Chad: Yeah. Fuck off.

Joel: So apparently the CEO at Deel is a contract that was in the story. I'm not sure how that works. Does that justify it?

Chad: No.

Joel: The dude's worth how much in stock? I can't imagine. Like that's always the game. I'm only gonna take a dollar in salary. Look at me. I'm one with the commoners. Yeah, I agree. Like there's so many players in this space, Oyster, Remote, Velocity Global. If you're looking at some of these companies, yes, this should be a little bit of a red flag to move on, and go to the next player. This is bad optics for them. The union game to me is really interesting. Howard Schultz, founder of Starbucks went to Capitol Hill and performed pretty well. Starbucks in comparison or in contrast, has seen more than 290 of its location unionize, just over the last year.

Joel: So who would you rather invest in at Chipotle or Starbucks? I'd rather eat at Chipotle. [laughter] But that's beside the point. I mean, unionization, ultimately, I think both of us wished. The federal government would take more of an active role, in making life better for frontline workers and not let the marketplace take so much of a lead on this. But until then, we're gonna have stories like this where unions are either trying to get crushed or some smarter employees are trying to lift up unions when they can.

Chad: Yeah. Well, and as long as this is allowed, and in this case, they had to pay... It was back pay. There's no fine. This isn't a big sting for corporate Chipotle. I mean, give me a fucking break. So as long as the federal government continues to allow these little check your cushions for a quarter of a million dollars, which you can find in Chipotle HQ, they need to do that, the back pay piece, and then they need to fine the shit out of 'em.

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: And that needs to go toward revenue, total national revenue, and then they will stop this shit. When you start smacking 'em hard, then they stop playing the stupid games. But this'll continue. And to say that they'll put those employees on hiring lists, I can only imagine. I can only imagine the interviews. Can someone actually ask if you're pro-union or not on an interview because I almost guarantee you, that's just a quick knockout question for them.

Joel: And I'm pretty sure that these employees electrical bills and plumbing bills and rent, I'm pretty sure that didn't pause while this case was sorted out. I'm sure that those hardships were still there.

Joel: Work from home, Chad, this is from the Wall Street Journal this week. A recent labor department report showed that working remotely is becoming increasingly rare with 72.5% of business establishments reporting that their employees teleworked rarely or not at all in 2022. This is compared to 60% in 2021. More workers were onsite full-time in 2022 than the previous year with employers pushing staff to work onsite more often as recession fears prompt an increased emphasis on worker productivity.

Joel: Some large companies are now expecting their employees to report in person more often viewing remote work as a liability. However, remote work is unlikely to disappear entirely with 13% of current job openings being for remote positions. Chad, the frog continues to boil. Your thoughts.

Chad: And it will continue to boil. I mean, it's interesting because we started treating... We had to start treating our employees like adults. And the problem with the US market is that for decades, the US has put GDP over happiness, not caring about the employee as much as the shareholder value. And we know this, right? So then in the pandemic, we saw that every job that could be performed remotely, magically was remote overnight. In those jobs, we saw great productivity lifts and happier employees because they had autonomy, which means we can have both great GDP and happy employees if they treat them like adults.

Chad: And therein lies the problem. The 1950s management style crowd does not want to treat employees like adults. They can't have that control measure that they always want. Now, in the last LinkedIn report, the number was 13% of jobs on LinkedIn were remote. 50% of all clicks went to those jobs. And if that's not a signal, I don't know what the fuck is. Seriously, companies are having problems retaining and attracting talent while the talent is... They're telling you what they want.

Joel: One of the things I think that we don't talk enough about in this issue is commercial real estate. And with the crash of SVB Signature Bank and a lot of things that banks are going through, everyone that I listen to is predicting a total collapse of commercial real estate, which has to weigh heavy on corporations and banks and let's call it the establishment in terms of like the world of that... World falling apart or not. And an easy solution is get your workers back into the office and we won't have to have this calamity. I think it's... I don't know how big of a piece of it that it is, but I think a lot of CEOs are getting together and say like, "If we don't get people back into the office, the whole system is gonna have a lot of problems."

Joel: Now, I personally think this real estate could be turned into, I don't know, places to live for people. Apparently there's a huge housing shortage, in the country. They can be put in new services, different businesses that can be put in there. Some laws may have to be changed to make that happen. But I think the commercial real estate has a lot to do with this. The CEOs and executives in the story talk about the initial, like work from home was a sugar rush of like, people wanted to stay at home, so they worked harder. Now they're getting back into their old habits of going on PornHub [laughter] and extended lunches or whatever instead of working. It's a control thing. Obviously talking about culture and rubbing together. I think part of it also is whether we're in a high unemployment place or not.

Joel: Certainly if employment's going up, then the ability to let these people go that wanna work from home is easier to do. They're the easiest people to lay off as many companies are going through layoffs. I'm still optimistic that when the dust clears, our children will and their children will be in a more remote workplace, a more fluid, lifestyle where they can work in multiple places, go different places. I'm still optimistic that the future is going to bend toward more autonomy, more remote work opportunities. But for right now it's the pendulum is swinging a little bit back to the power of the employer.

Chad: Any leader that says productivity is a problem, that's a leadership problem. If they're saying that things aren't getting done, that's a leadership problem, that's not a people problem. It's ridiculous. If they're not getting projects done, if they're not meeting quotas, I mean, these are things that we put in place to be able to analyze how a person's spending their time and if they're actually getting to those goals. So it's fairly simple. Those are individuals. If they're underperforming, they get put on a PIP or they... And or they get fired. That's it. Right?

Chad: So yeah. I think these are all just kinda like traps. Whether the company is... The real estate is being used or not, with the productivity, they've been making more profits. So who gives a fuck? Write out the lease and then get rid of the goddamn thing. The big thing that we talked about before is taxes. And will some of these cities come back at the companies and say, "Hey, look, you said that you were going to have thousands of people come in, which was going to boost more, more spending in the actual city." That's something that I think is legit. But then we have to talk about and how we evolve work and then how those different areas outside of the city actually evolve too.

Joel: Yeah, good point about the government benefits and tax breaks the companies have been getting. I'd forgotten about that almost as much as I had forgotten about OnlyFans which we have not talked about in months.

Chad: We have not.

Joel: So if you've been missing it, like I have, [laughter] stick around kids.

Chad: Oh, you haven't been missing it.

Joel: All right, Chad, let's talk a little OnlyFans.

Chad: Okay.

Joel: Jazmen Jafar.

Chad: Huh?

Joel: I'll spell that for the kids that wanna Google it later, J-A-Z-M-E-N, Jafar J-A-F-A-R.

Chad: Sounds like a Disney character. Aladdin.

Joel: I'm pretty sure it's not her real name. Jazmen Jafar, the 27-year-old attorney or should I say former attorney has left her law career to join OnlyFans where she has earned over $180,000 in the first three months of 2023.

Chad: What?

Joel: Through subscriptions costing $6.99 per month.

Chad: Wow.

Joel: Jafar had been working in law for just under six months when she decided to change her career. She had created an OnlyFans account in early of 2021, but had only dabbled in content creation. Jafar said that she only went into law to please her parents, who I'm sure are just thrilled of her new career choice and is now much happier as an OnlyFans creator. Chad, your take on our first lawyer. I think turning to OnlyFans. We've had a cop, a nurse, a teacher.

Chad: Yeah. Yeah.

Joel: Now we have a lawyer. Your thoughts?

Chad: It is amazing. And for some, some people I mean, 'cause I'm sure men do it too, just not as many. It's liberating and being able to create content, do what you want, and mom, dad doesn't like it, buy 'em a fucking house, they'll be fine. Right? At the end of the day. So it's really interesting that she... I think it actually said she made per month what she made all year, her annual salary as an attorney. So yeah, I mean, if you're a hot person and you don't mind a little risque, then OnlyFans might be the side hustle for you or new gig.

Joel: Yeah. There's somebody for everyone on OnlyFans I'm sure. [laughter] So yeah. So $180,000 in the first three months of OnlyFans she was making, $75,000 a year as a lawyer.

Chad: Wow.

Joel: As far as I'm concerned, anyone objecting to this career change is likely to be overruled, Jazmen Jafar.

Speaker 4: What are you doing step bro?

Joel: Good on you and Chad, we out.

Chad: We out.

Outro: Wow. Look at you. You made it through an entire episode of the Chad and Cheese Podcast. Or maybe you cheated and fast forwarded to the end. Either way, there's no doubt you wish you had that time back. Valuable time you could have used to buy a nutritious meal at Taco Bell. Enjoy a pour of your favorite whiskey. Or just watch big booty Latinas and bug fights on TikTok. No, you hung out with these two chuckle heads instead. Now, go take a shower and wash off all the guilt, but save some soap because you'll be back. Like an awful train wreck, you can't look away. And like Chad's favorite Western, you can't quit them either. We out.


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