Nothing Personal, Just Business!!!

I have always been told in my recruiting career “it’s nothing personal”. That can be a tough pill to swallow if your livelihood and success as a recruiter is dependent on the success of others. We all know its all about the timing but timing isn’t everything.

We live in a very political world where connections, networking and “who you know” plays a huge factor in getting a job, developing friendships, and succeeding in one career. It’s bitter sweet in a way. When you finally gain the respect of others, make the right connections, and start to make your way through the inner circle, the hungry wolves are following right behind you waiting for their shot.
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Seven Ways To Improve The Interaction Between Job Seekers and Recruiters

Working in a service based industry, your reputation is everything. So if recruiters are relying solely on the candidate’s experience you would think all recruiters would follow certain guidelines of moral and ethical behavior that would allow them to be successful. Unfortunately recruiters get a bad wrap; a reputation of being self-centered and not providing the level of service that a candidate would expect. Are the job seeker’s expectations too high? This is a loaded question that has come up repeatedly over the past thirteen years that I have been in the industry.

You’ll never make everyone happy but here are seven ways that recruiters can change the perception that some people have:

1) How come recruiters never call me back: This is the #1 pet peeve that candidates have. The honeymoon is short lived as recruiters call candidates with passion and excitement only never to reach out to them again. At a bare minimum, recruiters need to re-connect with candidates within a certain time frame (established during their initial conversation with the job seeker) via email or phone–it’s 2012 after all!

2) Write clear and descriptive job descriptions: Bad input equals bad output. As a recruiter you need to take the time and effort to meet with the hiring manager and go over the specifics of the role. The copy and paste tactic will not get you far.

3) Take the time to learn the lingo: A lot of recruiters get a bad wrap for playing buzz word bingo on resumes. Take the time to learn the technology; from my experience candidates love to talk about technology and are more than willing answer questions.

4) Explain where you are in the recruiting process: You can be the best matchmaker in town but if you don’t divulge where you are in the recruiting cycle (interviews, how many resumes you have sent for review, potential offers on the table) expectations can be set too high.

5) Provide feedback: This can be a double-edged sword and managers might have negative things to say about candidates, but in order to build trust sometimes you have to provide constructive criticism that people may not want to hear.

6) Understand where the candidates are coming from: One of the hardest jobs an individual will have is finding a job. Candidates know that you are one of the many avenues that they can use to find a position and, at the same time, you have to be able to put yourself in their shoes.

7) Finally make sure you close the loop: Once you engage a candidate and go through the recruiting process with them “closing the loop” with each person is one of the basic tenets that all recruiters should follow.

How many of you have a set of rules you follow during the candidate life cycle? What do you think of these 7 tips?

Knowing How To Win and Learning How To Lose

Recruiting is like baseball; hit the ball with a small wooden bat 33% percent of the time and you are an all-star. You might fail the other 67% of the time but it will be your failures that you’ll learn from and eventually drive your success.

Everybody wants to win and while winning isn’t everything nobody goes into a situation and says, “How do I lose?  How do I make sure that I prep myself to fail?”  A lot of careers are based on wins and losses–it’s a numbers games (that will never change). Just as a batter lines up for a pitch, you go into any recruiting situation prepared to talk to a candidate, sell him on the job, get his resume reviewed and hit it out of the park every time you send it to the manager.
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7 Tips to Successfully Navigating the Workplace

Finding a candidate with the correct credentials is easy (relatively speaking) but trying to find one that also shares the philosophy and cultural fit of an organization can be trickier. There are many things that can lead to one’s success or downfall within an organization. Here are a few that, if mastered, can make a world of a difference:

1) Listen, listen, listen: Don’t just nod your head like you’re paying attention; my teenage daughter does this all the time but I know she has not heard a word that I have said.

2) Manners: What ever you do, DO NOT talk over someone. Even if you are right and have valid points, you need to respect the other person.

3) Think before you speak: Just like “measure twice, cut once”, “think twice, say it once”. Be careful of what you say, especially during an interview. You never have another chance at making a first impression (when in doubt be conservative).
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The Competitive Edge

There are many life lessons that sports have taught me over the years; how to win, how to lose, how to work within a group and most importantly, how to compete. Nobody goes into a situation or a game without preparing, scouting, doing their homework, and understanding all the players involved. This approach and attitude in the sports world also carries over to the corporate recruiting environment.

The time has come for a high-level consulting role that not only requires traditional recruiting know-how but also a tremendous amount of soft skills and polish. For instance, if I’m preparing to work on a deal I have a checklist:
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Respect the Process


I have been fortunate enough within my career to not be personally affected by a layoff, down sizing or restructuring. I started out as a college intern at a small niche recruiting firm and I had absolutely no idea prior to the internship as to what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Thirteen years later, multiple roles and one acquisition, I still stand with the same company that I started with as an intern.

The one thing that I have learned through all my years of experience is that while at times the recruitment process can be frustrating, it ultimately comes down to building good relationships and a solid reputation.  If you respect the process and people involved, gain their trust and follow through, then you’ve mastered the art of recruiting.
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