3-Minute Interview: Carole Shattil

In time for Valentine's Day, the founder and president of CheckMates Inc, a Bay Area matchmaking service, talks about her work.

How and why did you start CheckMates Inc? This is my 16th year. I saw there was a need for busy business professionals to connect. No one had time. For me, it was a good transition from working in executive search, and it went well with my background in psychology. It’s more gratifying to help people in their personal lives than to help them find jobs.

How's your success rate? Everyone gets to select who they want. I give people previews; they have at least a half a dozen people to choose from. I’ve had people get married on the basis of one meeting. The service offers an 18-month membership.

Who are your clients? They’re people who are serious-minded. Some are people who don’t want to expose themselves or participate in online dating. They’re executives, politicians, celebrities.

What’s the problem with online dating? Most people, 95 percent, misrepresent themselves. Statistics from three years ago said that 35 percent of men who went online to find dates were married. There are lots of things to be aware of.

So one of the main benefits of CheckMates Inc is that it involves a screening process? Yes. We do background checks. We make sure people are who they say they are; the skeletons come out of the closet. People feel safe going out on dates we set up.

How’s business around Valentine’s Day? It increases. On holidays and birthdays, people are feeling the emptiness of not having someone special in their lives.

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