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As I have been working a number of years in sales, I have dealt with numerous recruiters, some who have been great and some who have been not so great. The majority of them used similar tactics in trying to convince me to interview for jobs that I had absolutely no interest in. When I said, “Thank you for thinking of me but that’s not what I’m looking for,” some even became argumentative.
Their main concern was in collecting a quick commission check. I am grateful for having dealt with them, as it made me very cognizant of how I did not want to conduct my business as a recruiter. I strongly believe that if you are honest, passionate, and genuinely want to help people, sales somehow magically fall into place.
Another observation I made was that some recruiters treated their clients much better than their candidates. Of course, the clients are extremely important. After all, they are the ones who hire you, work with you on a daily basis, and pay the bills. However, the candidate is equally, if not more important.
Imagine that you are about to sell into a Fortune 500 company. You scheduled the meeting, they are excited at the possibility of working with you, and it’s going to be a huge deal. The only problem is that you demo your product and the company finds it’s inferior . What do you think the chances are that you are going to land that sale?
The same thing holds true with your candidates. In a sense, your candidates are your products. Without “A” talent, you have nothing to sell.
Treat your candidates the same way as you would treat your clients. Approximately 50% of the candidates I typically place are from referrals. The ironic part is that many of my referrals come from candidates that I never placed but because I was always nice, helpful and appreciative, they typically reciprocated.
Social media and resume databases are wonderful but don’t undervalue the importance of your candidates. They have the ability to make you look good (or bad), assist you with searches, and like your client, help or ruin your reputation. Be honest with them just like you would with your client. If they are most passionate about technology and outside sales, don’t try to convince them to be in inside sales for a logistics company.
Trying to fit a square peg in a round hole is a lose-lose-lose situation. The candidate loses because he/she is unhappy with the job and possibly quits. You lose because you need to place the candidate and you have an unhappy client and candidate. Your client loses because they just wasted time and money to train a new employee, who they now need to replace.
Is the client or candidate more important? The truth is that they’re equally important and it’s essential to have both. The bottom line is a fairly simple lesson. If your main motive is to help people (throw away the financial piece), things will fall into place for you. Good people want to help other good people.