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Archive for November, 2008

The famous Dylan brownies

November 25th, 2008   By   Filed Under: Candidates, Everyone

There’s no better way to say it than with a box of homemade brownies. We’ve been baking brownies for the last few months and delivering them across London.

From inception, we’ve had a tradition of sending a box of treats to our candidates on their first or second day at work, we think it helps break the ice and is a small something from us to congratulate them on their success.

Brownies are a great way to introduce yourself to your new team and we always make sure that the boxes are full to bursting. More brownies, more friends we reckon.

We used to buy little cakes from a store down the road in Borough Market but having been treated to Emma’s brownies (Emma works with us as an account manager) we asked her to start making brownies for all of our candidate too.

Emma now has a great little side business and we receive a regular delivery of brownies straight from her kitchen, which are then lovingly boxed and wrapped by Amanda and sent out all over London.

After much cajoling, Emma has agreed to divulge her secret brownie recipe.

Here is the not so secret recipe;

You need all of the following;

¾ of a bar of butter (a normal bar is about 200g)
A slab of cooking chocolate, the darker the better (185g)
A big handful of plain flour (85g)
40 g of cocoa powder (the same amount that you would use for about three hot chocolates)
50g of white chocolate (the equivalent of two Cadbury dreams)
50g of milk chocolate
3 large eggs
275g golden caster sugar

To prepare them;

1. Throw smallish cubes of butter in to a medium sized bowl. Taking care not to eat it all, throw in all of the dark chocolate in small pieces. Quarter fill a small saucepan with hot water and sit the bowl on the top so that it perches on the rim without touching the water. Stir the chocolate over a low heat until it melts and then remove the bowl from the pan to cool down to room temperature.
2. Whilst that’s cooling off, prepare your oven (heating it to 160C/conventional180C/gas 4. Most ovens take 10-15 minutes to heat up). Using a shallow square tin (you won’t be able to get them out if the tin is too deep!), cut out a square of non-stick paper to line the base. Tip the flour and cocoa powder into a sieve held over a medium bowl, tapping and shaking the sieve so they run through together and you get rid of any lumps.
3. Chop the white and milk chocolate into chunks on a board (the bigger the knife, the better).
4. Break the eggs into a large bowl (one handed if you’re an expert) and tip in the sugar. With an electric mixer on maximum speed, whisk the eggs and sugar until they look thick and creamy, like a milk shake (look is the operative word here, it won’t taste like a milkshake at this stage). When the mixture becomes pale and is about twice the size, it’s ready.
5. Pour the cooled chocolate mixture over the eggy mousse and gently fold together with a spatula. Plunge the spatula in at one side, take it underneath and bring it up the opposite side and in again at the middle. Continue going under and over in a figure of eight, moving the bowl round after each folding so you can get at it from all sides, until the two mixtures are one and the colour is a mottled dark brown. The idea is to marry them without knocking out the air, so be as gentle and slow as you like. Patience is a virtue in this case as you’ll get better brownies at the end.
6. Resift the cocoa and flour mix from earlier in to the mixture and mix in using the same technique as before. Remember to be gentle. The mixture will look dry and dusty at first, and a bit unpromising, but if you keep going very gently and patiently, it will end up looking gungy and fudgy. Stop just before you feel you should, as you don’t want to overdo this mixing. Finally, stir in the white and milk chocolate chunks until they’re dotted throughout. Now your mixing is done and the oven can take over.
7. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, scraping every bit out of the bowl with the spatula. Gently ease the mixture into the corners of the tin and paddle the spatula from side to side across the top to level it. Put in the oven and set your timer for 25 minutes. To check if it is ready or not, shake the tin from side to side. If the brownie wobbles in the middle, it’s not quite done and will need another 5 minutes or so.
8. You’ll need to leave the giant brownie until it’s completely cold (unless you’re serving them with
ice cream). Once cold, you can lift the brownie out and chop it in to little or large pieces. This is a good time to reward the chef with a cheeky brownie of two.

That’s it.

Global Student Entrepreneur Awards – Driving the Economy

November 21st, 2008   By   Filed Under: Candidates, Employers

I have recently returned from the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards (GSEA) over in the US and was extremely impressed by the calibre of undergraduate entrepreneurs from all over the world.

With an opportunity to win over $ 100,000 of cash and business products donated by Entrepreneurs Organisation members and the opportunity to leverage the huge network of over 7,000 entrepreneurs from across the globe, this years competition was very eagerly anticipated and well subscribed to.

The global finals took place in Chicago, on the day after the nomination of Barack Obama as the 44th President elect, and saw entrepreneurs from across the globe come to help judge and applaud the business initiatives of students from across the globe including Peter Thomas of Century 21 fame, Bill Farley (winner of the Horatio Alger Award for entrepreneurial excellence and Robert Kiyosaki, motivational speaker and author of the global best seller, Rich Dad, Poor Dad.

This years competition was won by Dominic Coryell from Northeastern University. Coryell’s company, Husky Express, a high-tech laundry and dry cleaning service. Coryell emerged from a group of 26 finalists to win this year’s competition, the “Heisman Trophy” for top undergraduate student business owners. The annual competition, presented by Mercedes-Benz Financial, this year attracted 1,000 collegians from more than 300 universities in 11 countries with the finalists businesses representing more than US$20 million in sales.

“The number and calibre of award nominations that GSEA receives is more impressive each year. We congratulate this year’s winners for distinguishing themselves from a talented pool of innovative young business owners,” said Dave Galbenski, chairman of EO’s Global Board of Directors. “Entrepreneurs drive economic recovery during down-turns. We are proud to offer programs like GSEA that nurture the next generation of business leaders.”

Coryell was also given the Innovation Award for Husky Express’ implementation of a fully-automated process that provides high-quality, next-day delivery and pick up of garments, creating efficiencies not commonly associated with the industry. Husky Express’ 2008 revenues are approaching $800,000. Second place in the overall competition as well as the Lessons from the Edge Award was given to Joseph Pascaretta from the University of Michigan for his company Alps Technology International. Seth Flowerman from Cornell University was awarded third place and the Social Impact Award for his company, Career Explorations, LLC.

It is great to see initiatives like these being spearheaded as it is the entrepreneurs that will help bring stability and growth to today’s battered economy, creating much needed jobs as they continue to innovate and capitalise on opportunities within the market place.

Dylan the Brand.

November 17th, 2008   By   Filed Under: Everyone


Why Dylan*?

Our ambition has always been to shake up the recruitment process, scrape it all back to the beginning and bring the ‘value added’ back in to the mix. A good recruitment consultancy, and the consultants that work within it, should feel like a real strategic partner rather than an unfortunate cost in the recruitment drive.


Our main observation has been that the success of the recruitment process hinges greatly on the quality of the consultant, their personal motivation and their overall passion and professionalism. A great recruitment partnership is only possible with a great recruitment consultant on board. We wanted to embody this ethos within our brand and decided to name the business after that ideal consultant.


Names are hugely subjective, and so what we thought would be a relatively straightforward brand development took ages of back and forth debate on names. We felt like parents trying to decide on a name for our child!


After much discussion and many names thrown out of the running for many varying reasons, we all agreed on Dylan. Dylan, because it’s a unisex name, we didn’t know any bad people called Dylan and we thought that we would like a consultant called Dylan. Potentially silly reasons, but all good reasons to us.


Dylan* is the ultimate consultant, the person you would entrust your career and your future with, your partner when you’re looking for a job, your partner when you’re looking to recruit.  We’re Dylan* and we’re here as your recruitment consultancy’