I don't ever remember sitting in my bed as a child and saying to myself, I really wanna grow up and have a job pitching jobs to complete strangers all day everyday and I doubt you did either! Yet a good percentage of people will at one time or another try their hand at recruitment, maybe as a new career or change of atmosphere. Most people actually stumble upon recruitment by chance and are tempted by the two G's, Gold & Glory. good news for the stumblers because it is relatively easy to be given a chance in recruitment, agencies generally experience a comparatively large churn of recruitment hopefuls every year and most newbies do not make it beyond year one. This is one of the contributing factors to why recruiters on occasion have been tarred with a less than sterling reputation, when junior recruits are pitted against one another it inevitably leads to the use of underhanded tactics. Please don't be scared off by this, if you have somewhat decent sales skills and you are willing to put the hard work in you can build a career and be well remunerated for making the genuine effort. Regarding salary, the rule is that working for a small/average company means a low basic, high commission and no benefits worth mentioning. The reverse ratios, big salary and low commissions, apply for large companies and the benefits tend to be quite generous. Smaller firms tend to be far more likely to take a chance on newbees because they offer lower basics, the risk is only as high as the basic is low.
So here are the 6 attributes I believe every good recruiter needs to be able to demonstrate:
1. Natural born salesman
Sell me this pen! There are three unique sales cycles in any given recruitment process; getting the vacancy from the client, sourcing an interested candidate and finally bringing the two together and making a placement that will last. Having the ability to present offerings and candidates in the kindest light is critical to succeeding; placements do not make themselves and sales skills whilst being an essential factor in your success will also make your life much easier.
2. Connecting People
Are you the love doctor of your social circle? In order to be a successful recruitment consultant you have to understand how to be a great matchmaker. You need to be focused on formulating solutions and understanding the marketplace. You should be able to spot opportunities for making placements before your clients, candidates and especially competitors have realized it.
Have you often left a donkey hind-legless? You absolutely must have great communication skills to succeed in rectuitment. Speaking with conviction and confidence when selling yourself to clients, and jobs to candidates is essential.You have to be an expert (It's expected) and know what you are talking about and more importantly make other believe you know what you're talking about. Being the gazillionth recruiter to call a client in a week is no walk in the park . It requires you to truly stand out and command (not demand) that they hear what you have to say. Your ability to build rapport, nurture relationships and get results (RRR) with everyone you deal with is crucial, just like in any customer service / sales job.
4. Have to be Positive
Are you as happy as Larry? Your positive attitude will get you through those dark days when neither potential clients nor candidates seem to be all that willing to entertain you. Do not fear rejection, you will notice that for every Yes you you get, five No will likely follow. This is a numbers game (a smart one) and the pay off will come through working hard but also working smart.
5. ICT -be savvy
So, are you on the facebook? Being a great recruiter also means being tech savvy. The vast majority of recruitment is done with some form of software nowadays, on-the-line is where the little magic elves in the confuser find all the info these days. A successful recruiter has to not only be comfortable with candidate tracking systems but job boards, online networking platforms and allot of other agile and changing technologies. Clients have many dedicated candidate search systems nowadays; candidates can be found on LinkedIn, Wannawork and Worky so it’s about being a step ahead at all times.
6. A bit bonkers
Do you have anything in common with Russell Brand? Chasing down people who want nothing to do with you all the live long day does require some degree of insanity, no matter how positive your attitude is, it starts to wear on you after a few years. There is some sweet "do-ray-mee" to be made in recruitment but be under no illusions that it isbasically glorified telesales with a nicer title and better rewards. As long as you know it’s a somewhat 'unorthodox’ job and accept it for what it is, you'll likely survive with your sanity in tact.
So do you have what it takes to be a world-class recruiter?
Next time your talking to a recruiter (if you are anywhere on the web it'll likely be soon), ask them about their job and see if there are any vacancies at their firm. Recruitment might not be your ultimate calling but a spell in this "wonderful" world will do your career all the good in the world. Such multifaceted and challenging job will give you a wealth of experience and reveal a treasure trove of new skills you never knew you had. Give it a shot, see what you think and let me know you thoughts. And if you don’t warm to it, you can always use your new found knowledge to land yourself a great job or start a blog about it like some individuals do.
"If you're willing to keep moving forward, eventually you will succeed."
All opinions and views expressed are my own, they do not necessarily reflect the positions of my businesses.
One reader asked why I monitor my comments and why they must be approved, and just for the rest of you it's not for censorship, it's because of Spam-bots. I'll publish all comments posted by real people :)