Mogulspeak: Who would you hire?A perennial trope of mogul types — actual and aspiring — is praise by way of offer to hire. You see this a lot when one exec is asked about another whom he or she admires. Typically, Exec A sings the praises of Exec B, and as a capper, proudly claims that he or she would gladly hire Exec B, given the chance. On the face of it, a nice gesture; in reality, a rhetorical move that both absorbs and diminishes the status of the supposedly praised Exec B.

For example, Jason Calacanis is fond of this maneuver (e.g. Amanda Congdon and Lifehacker's Gina Trapani), though he's hardly alone. Robert Scoble even did the same thing for Gina, in agreement with Calacanis. This isn't to say that such hiring love isn't sincere hugs and kisses. It just comes across as a creepy bit of self-love, tossed in as the ultimate expression of appreciation. You are so very, very talented — so talented, in fact, that I would hire you. And I, as we know, am an excellent judge of these things. You've really made it now, kiddo, to have crossed the threshold of hireability for me.

The praising party gets to step on a little of the praise-ee's limelight, while subtly putting the praisee in his or her place. If you agree that the person is talented, well then, of course such an august personage would want to hire them. Such a smart cookie. And the proposed hiring is presented as a brass ring of achievement for the praised, doled out generously by the praising party.

Again, this is not to assign nefarious intent for every occurrence of the practice, or even for the Calacanis and Scoble examples noted above. But there are much more egregious examples out there. Think of particular cases when it's obvious that the praised would never in a million years work for the praiser — that's where the praiser just wants to glom on to the glory train. We're looking for a few of these to run for your amusement. If you come across any particularly "good" ones, send 'em in.