head·​hunt ˈhed-ˌhənt How to pronounce headhunt (audio)
headhunted; headhunting; headhunts

transitive verb

: to recruit (personnel and especially executives) for top-level jobs

intransitive verb

: to recruit personnel for top-level jobs

Examples of headhunt in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Corporates and industries headhunt good engineers and not many see a career path in global health. Madhukar Pai, Forbes, 22 May 2022 More than that, the right perks can get employees to stay with a company while other businesses headhunt them. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 6 May 2021 Nonetheless, some with deep expertise in specific industries or corporate functions have thrived, says Nancy Garrison Jenn, who helps multinationals headhunt the right headhunters. The Economist, 6 Feb. 2020 There have been headhunting expeditions against Bret Stephens, Bari Weiss, and Sarah Jeong, among others, and the Times mostly has held firm. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, 27 Aug. 2019 Pay for the highest ranks could top $3 million this year, a few hundred thousand dollars more than a year ago, according to a survey by headhunting firm Options Group. Gunjan Banerji, WSJ, 28 Nov. 2018 Following early success at EMI Classics, Foster was headhunted by Richard Branson to be the founding managing director of Virgin Classics, before going on to lead BMG Classics UK. Regina Cho, Billboard, 26 Jan. 2018 Intelligence service offers ’exciting career change’ Facebook page has wider reach than website, Mossad says Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency is turning to Facebook for headhunting help. Alisa Odenheimer, Bloomberg.com, 21 Dec. 2017 At the same meeting, a veteran teacher my school can’t bear to lose admitted he was being headhunted by a better-paying district close to his girlfriend’s house in Silicon Valley. Andrew Simmons, The Atlantic, 28 June 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'headhunt.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1969, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of headhunt was in 1969

Dictionary Entries Near headhunt

Cite this Entry

“Headhunt.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/headhunt. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

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