I’ve been in recruitment for a long time, a helluva long time……. Not quite as long as it’s been since a Tigers premiership, but a long time nonetheless… (apologies here to any interstate, or international readers, but it is AFL finals and I needed to vent of behalf of downtrodden and anguished Richmond supporter base….).
I don’t know the accurate stats, but let’s say that the number of interviews I’ve conducted during my time in recruitment runs into the thousands. I consider myself to be a strong ‘gut feel’ recruiter, and when you back this up with behavioural interviewing techniques, I would like to think that I know motivators – and can predict behaviours of my candidates……. Hmmmm…… I’d like to think that…
The trouble with recruitment is that we are all operating in a market jam packed with competitors, and we are trying to sell our clients the most unreliable product in the world – PEOPLE.
It’s not like we are selling screws…. Think how easy it would be if our clients ordered screws…. Yes Craig, I’d like 4 screws – Galvanised 50mm in length and a thread size of 3mm… Easy right? Screws don’t ‘no-show’ to interviews. Screws don’t get counter-offered. And screws definitely don’t need to fly home to the UK for a family emergency…. No screws are reliable. Screws are emotionally stable and screws are predictable… In short, screws…..are boring!
So next time you complain about the unpredictability and unreliability of your candidates. The next time a candidate completely ‘does your head in’ by making you seem like an absolute, second rate muppet in your clients’ eyes. And the next time you are absolutely flabbergasted and flummoxed by the excuse left on your answer phone at 4:30 in the morning, or the long winded email with at least 6 contradictions punctuated throughout (Isn’t that the third time your candidate has attended their Grandmother’s funeral in the last 18 months???)… Be thankful.
That’s right – be thankful… Think about the feeling you get when you make that difficult placement – you know the one, when you overcome hard to reach referees, you negotiate past the counter-offer and you massage slow moving clients back from the precipice. Remember that first beer, or bubbles in celebration. Remember that commission you made…. And remember, you will do it all over again next month – and the one after that!!
Someone once described recruitment to me as the ‘Champagne or Razor blades Roller Coaster’… I think that description is both apt and eloquent…. But hey…… If you don’t like it you can always chuck it all in and get a job at Bunnings… selling screws……
As always I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments…