A pretty straightforward question for a rather complex answer, I’d say? The thing is, recruiting is truly an art. An art, that works differently for each individual person. What works for one person may not for another. That’s because, in order to truly succeed, you truly have to find what works best for you and invest your heart, soul, personality, and countless hours into making it and more importantly creating your own “network.” If done right, the reward far outweighs the frustration.
Starting off in the recruiting world is definitely not an easy feat. I’d say you hit more rejection than you do success, AT FIRST. However, those who are relentless, hungry and driven do not allow that to get in the way of their success. Ever heard of the saying, “great things take time,” well that is definitely applicable when it comes to recruiting. It truly comes down to a numbers game of constantly pushing, reaching out, cold calling, meetings and not letting rejection smack you in the face. Instead, use it to push you, motivate you and learn from. Given time, you begin to build a network for yourself which is definitely one of the most vital parts of being a successful recruiter
So what are the key factors that separate a good recruiter from a great one you ask? Besides being tenacious, reliable, hardworking, goal-driven, persistent, and up for the challenge…
Confidence: How will a potential candidate or client have confidence in putting trust in you if you are not even confident in yourself and your recruiting abilities? An individual’s confidence, or lack thereof, is easier to read than you may think. There is a certain air of confidence that must be exuded when speaking with a candidate or client. It will draw people to you and have them wanting to know more.
Excellent listening skills: Listening is one of the MOST vital factors in being a great recruiter. The more you listen to your candidate, the more you will find out about them, what they like, what they hate, do they have a family, are they looking to relocate, what are they looking for in their next role, are they even looking, what will it take for them to make a career move. If you do not give your candidate a second to speak how can you learn anything about them and what THEY want.
Strong relationship building/communication skills: Of course there needs to be a balance between having your candidate or client as your BFF and having a healthy, friendly working relationship. However, you should create a strong, mutual relationship with them. They need to be able to trust you and know that you have their best interest at heart. Get to know them professionally as well as personally. Ask your client Tom how the kids are, how was the vacation they took last week? Ask your candidate Sara how her trip to California was, how was her honeymoon? Be ENGAGED! Whether you’re trying to find a role for a candidate or a candidate for a client, you MUST be able to provide either relationship with reassurance that the job WILL get done…no pun intended. Furthermore, by digging a little deeper and getting to know them on a personal level it allows them to feel comfortable speaking with you and let down their walls. If they think you are just a salesperson looking for your next commission check the conversation will be very surface level, cold, and not nearly as productive.
Time Management/Detail Oriented/Multi-tasker: Let me tell you, there are times when as a recruiter your head is about to spin off because you are doing 100 things at once. You must, must, must be able to stay organized. Now of course this looks different for every person. However time is of the essence as a recruiter. Your potential candidate can be swooped away in two minutes by another recruiter if you’re too busy trying to dig through a mess of unorganized emails, papers and voicemails. With that being said, time management, attention to detail and the ability to multi-task are extremely important in order to be effective, efficient and successful. Whether it be speaking with candidates, speaking with a client or closing a deal. Speaking to a candidate about a role that was meant for a different candidate OR talking to a client about crucial details that were discussed the week prior is the last way you will get ahead in recruiting.
Marketing: Social Media, digital advertising, promotions. This is the way of the 21st century. Social media is the new way that companies, sports teams, services, etc. promote themselves. It’s free advertising, why wouldn’t you take advantage of that?! This allows you to not only promote your services and roles but a more personable approach of who you are as a recruiter. Brushing up on your social media skills, will definitely only help you in reaching a wider audience and being more successful.
Now as I said, what works for one recruiter may not work for another. It takes time, trial and error and countless hours to find out what works best for you and your network. However, the above tips and advice can only further help you in your career…. Ready, set, recruit!