I’m serious. Outside of family, friends and work colleagues, the most important relationship you should cultivate if you’re serious about career development is with your recruiter. In the past I’ve found that the best relationships I’ve had with candidates and clients have had a number of common characteristics which I believe made them fruitful.
- Honesty. Firstly with yourself. Be realistic about your goals and aspirations from a career perspective but don’t be afraid to openly discuss them with your recruiter. I firmly believe that we’re first and foremost here to serve you and that requires us to listen more than we speak and to engage with you in a truly consultative and collaborative manner. We’re human too and the best candidate and client relationships are founded on being honest with one another, which sometimes means telling candidates the “harsh” truth about their prospects but equally being respectful of their choices and decisions. So the next time your recruiter says to you, “be straight with me”, chances are that you’ll find that they’re just trying to have a more open and honest relationship with you and that you ultimately will benefit from this.
- Clear Communication. We’ve all had those “lost in translation” moments in the past where what you thought someone said and what they actually said are two entirely different things. Usually it boils down to one or both parties to the conversation not listening properly. It’s taken me many years of conscious practice to listen more than I speak when I’m speaking with clients or candidates, especially for the first time. The best relationships have a clarity of communicationas their hallmark, so there is no confusion and commonality of agreed goals between recruiter, client and candidate. The key here is to set out your expectations at the beginning of the relationship, that way your recruiter will know how best to meet those expectations and ultimately deliver a good candidate/client experience.
- Trust. Do you trust your recruiter to represent you and your interests well? If not, why not? And more importantly if not, do you need to find another recruiter? Like all the best relationships, some people will click when they meet, others may not. And believe me, trust is a two way street. Your need to have utmost faith that your recruiter is going to represent you in the best possible light and put your hiring or career objectives in front of everything else. If you don’t get that feeling of there being no one else in the room next time you speak with your recruiter, ditch them and find someone you do trust to deliver you the best recruitment service possible.
- Proactive. It’s a familiar theme. You meet with some recruiters, the meetings went ok but you’ve heard nothing further and you’re worried. I would be too, because you should be hearing back from that recruiter unless they’re completely uninterested in your job/candidate search and in that case, you certainly should be seeking alternative recruitment assistance. You took the time out of your busy day to meet the recruiter, so the least you expect is a follow up call. But the onus falls on you to follow up within an agreed timeframe. A call or an email every couple of days can serve as a gentle reminder that you’re still seeking your next opportunity and don’t be fobbed off . Your persistence will pay off and will benefit your recruiter relationship in the long term. But be proactive and don’t wait for that call.
- Maintain the relationship. Once you’re engaged with a recruiter that you find supportive and helpful, be mindful of keeping that relationship open even after you’ve found that perfect job or hired that perfect candidate. One way of ensuring that you’re top of any recruiter’s hit list is to drop them an occasional email or tofollow them on twitter (we especially love that) and perhaps share an occasional tweet with the stratosphere. We also really appreciate people who will share industry information and job openings with us. By being front and centre of your attention for a brief period during your job search doesn’t mean that the relationship ends thereafter. We’re in this together for the long haul and like all of the best relationships, they evolve and continue over time and you should have your recruitment partner by your side throughout.
If you would like to explore new opportunities or have a genuinely consultative conversation with a recruitment professional about the market, call or email Campbell Rochford today.
Email: [email protected]
Campbell Rochford – Turning Good To Great