When recruiters become cheerleaders!
“Oh, I’ve got the perfect job for you with the most amazing business, you’ll love it!” How many times have you heard that from a recruiter? And when you actually get talking to them, they have no idea who are or what you do? A classic example was in 2013, my mobile rang whilst I was at my desk and I actually picked it up (I’m much more disciplined at work now so tend to ignore it!). And the voice at the end said “Hi Jo, this is xxxx from Michael Page in Birmingham. Are you ok to talk?” Yes I was, so I waited for the next sentence. “I’ve come across your details on our database and I’m working on a role that I think would be perfect for you. It’s an Asda National Account Managers role for a chilled food manufacturer……” and at this point I switched off. Perfect for me? PERFECT FOR ME?? 2 years previously maybe but as I sat at my desk, in the Michael Page office in Nottingham which was where I’d worked for about 12 months, I knew this recruitment consultant didn’t have the perfect job for me. I also knew I was feeling a bit mischievous, so I said it was a bad line and asked him to call me on my landline, giving him the internal extension number. It was then that the penny dropped for him. And as I clicked on the amazing system that this global recruitment company had, there on the profile of “Jo Richardson” aka me, was that I had left the food industry and was now working for Michael Page.
Instances like this give recruiters a bad name and quite rightly so I’d say. But you have to love the enthusiasm that each recruitment consultant has for each job that they get on. Because are all jobs amazing? Are all companies a great company to work for? I approach people on LinkedIn via InMail’s after looking at people’s profiles and I have no idea if salary expectations match what they’re looking for, but I never say “Oh I’ve got the perfect job for you” unless I’ve spoken to the candidate before and know exactly what they’re looking for.
I’m fortunate enough to work with a portfolio of clients who I genuinely really like representing. Great people, very realistic about where their business currently is versus where they want to go, what their challenges are, what the opportunities are, and I’d say, 9 times out of 10, I love the product. So, when I speak to a candidate I am genuinely excited about the job. And even when the role is something I could never imagine doing (Company Microbiologist for example) I can guarantee that I’ve spent enough time with the business to understand the role and how it fits into the wider business, that when I talk to a candidate, I have a complete understanding of the importance of the role, which then makes it a natural sell when talking about it.
And then there’s the job that just won’t go away. It took me 5 months to recruit a Head of Operations role, a pivotal role for a great client of mine. But after 5 months of saying “I’ve got this great opportunity, a real challenge of a lifetime….” did I still have the enthusiasm I did at the start of the process when talking to candidates? And if god forbid, the candidate who had met with the CEO and CFO hadn’t been offered the job, or they’d declined the offer, could I then pick up the phone with the same gusto as I did 5 months ago? In all honesty no. Not straight away anyway, I’d have probably needed a few days to bang my head against a brick wall. But thankfully that didn’t happen, as they did offer, and he did accept….yay!! But I’d have taken some time, re-written the job advert, re-read my notes, spoken to the client to see if anything had changed, dug out my big cheerleading pompoms and gone again….”I’ve got a great Head of Operations role that I’m recruiting….”
So perhaps for anyone who works in a sales environment, perhaps there is a cheerleader in all of us. Or maybe it’s just tenacity, motivation and a need to pay the bills. And for all candidates, I challenge you to find the recruiter who does have the perfect job for you. Someone who has taken the time to find out about you so when they come knocking on your door, their enthusiasm for you to their client, matches their enthusiasm for the job they want to talk about. Because finding a new job is hard work, enthusiasm is infectious and we all need a bit more cheer in our lives!
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