Welcome to The Fordyce Letter:

The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession


Terry Petra

Recipient of the Harold B. Nelson Award, Terry Petra is one of our industry's leading trainers and consultants. He has successfully conducted in-house programs for hundreds of search, placement, temporary staffing firms and industry groups across the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, England, and South Africa. To learn more about his training products and services, including PETRA ON CALL, and BUSINESS VALUATION, visit www.tpetra.com. Terry can be reached at (651) 738-8561 or email him at Terry@tpetra.com.

Articles by Terry Petra

How-To

How Well Can You Evaluate Your Own Hires?



Interviewing - free

Interviewing - freeHow often have you heard owners and managers of staffing firms say:

Why is it that we can be so successful in finding top performers for our clients’ organizations, yet so inept at finding them for our own?

The answer to this question lies not in the finding. Rather, it lies in the ability to evaluate. Fact be known, the majority of staffing firms are well equipped to be effective with the process of finding (recruiting). After all, this is primarily a sales function and most industry specific training focuses on the development of sales skills. Still, as important as this may be, you must develop a completely different set of skills in order to be truly effective at evaluation.

Business Development, The Business of Recruiting

7 Steps To Saying Yes When They Ask “But Can You Deliver?”



Stairway up - freedigital

Stairway up - freedigitalIn the press to take advantage of the slowly improving economy, a growing number of recruiting and staffing firms find themselves over-selling and under-delivering. Consequently, clients are receiving inconsistent results and the quality of service standard for our industry is falling.

In response, prospects as well as clients are increasingly asking, “But can you deliver?”

You must carefully consider your response to this question. Companies are frustrated by sophisticated sales presentations that have little real relevance to the actual delivery of services. With minor modifications, they have already heard most of these presentations from your competitors. Therefore, you must ask yourself, “Can we deliver every time, on time, without exception?”

The answer can be “Yes.”

Counter Offers

Use the Power Of An Alliance to Prevent Counteroffers



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counteroffersOne of the best ways to insure that you can disarm the potential damaging effects of a placed candidate accepting a counteroffer is to form an alliance with your client. This alliance helps deal with the three major emotions experienced by most candidates before, during, and after their decision:

  • Fear of change.
  • Uncertainty about the future.
  • Doubt regarding their decision.

Recently, I discussed a counteroffer prevention strategy. As stated in that article,  together with your candidate, you must develop a clear picture of their true reasons for changing positions.

Closing, How-To

Implementing an Effective Counteroffer Prevention Strategy



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Almost daily, I receive calls from practitioners who find themselves challenged by the fact their candidates are receiving an ever increasing number of counteroffers. Although not a new phenomenon, recruiters who do not learn to properly execute an effective counteroffer prevention strategy will continue to find their resources squandered as more and more placement opportunities are lost to this, the “dark side” of our improving economy.

In a previous article, I laid the foundation for an effective Counteroffer Prevention Strategy. This strategy rests on your ability to secure from the candidate timely answers to a series of questions that help “frame” your relationship. Once this positive frame of reference has been established, a more in-depth discussion is possible. From this discussion, you should be able to produce a clear picture of the candidate’s true motivations for changing positions.

(Click here for the questions Terry recommends asking every candidate.)

These reasons must be identified at the initiation of the relationship and reviewed, updated, and reinforced at every step of the process through offer acceptance, resignation, and the completion of all the components in the transition strategy.

How-To, Relationships

Four Questions to Always Ask Your Candidate



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Here are the four questions Terry Petra suggests you ask every candidate. The questions originally appeared in a longer article in the January 2013 issue of The Fordyce Letter subscriber newsletter.

It is imperative for you to quickly identify with the recruit any and all potential motivations they may have for a possible job change. This can best be accomplished by asking certain questions. The answers will quickly establish a realistic frame of reference between the two of you, and serve as a foundation for your relationship.

Cold Calling, How-To

Getting the Recruit To See You As A Counselor



Cold calling logo

Note: This is the final part of a four part series on cold calling. In part one, Terry talked about the first 30 seconds of making a cold call. Three goals must be achieved in that time, he said: Get attention; Avoid rejection, and; Establish a dialogue. In part two, Terry explained how to begin a dialogue with a client explaining why it is you called them and what you can do to help them. Last week he offered a number of openings that will get the attention of a candidate, even one who’s been hearing from other recruiters regularly

Setting a proper frame of reference with a recruit should be a primary objective during your first in-depth discussion. This will determine whether or not the recruit views you as an asset or a liability.

For the purposes of this article, we will define a recruit as someone with whom you have initiated the first contact, and someone who, at the point of that initial contact, was not actively seeking a change in employment.

Remember: The decision a recruit makes will impact their life to a greater degree than it will impact yours.

Keeping this in mind, it is imperative for you to quickly identify with the recruit any and all potential motivations they may have for a possible job change. This can best be accomplished by asking certain questions. The answers will quickly establish a realistic frame of reference between the two of you, and serve as a foundation for your relationship.

Cold Calling, How-To

Here’s How To Grab That Hot Recruit’s Attention Fast



Cold calling logo

Note: This is part three of a four part series on marketing calls. In part one Terry talked about the first 30 seconds of making a cold call. Three goals must be achieved in that time, he said: Get attention; Avoid rejection, and; Establish a dialogue. In part two, Terry explained how to begin a dialogue with a client explaining why it is you called them and what you can do to help them. The final part will be posted next Thursday.

Have you ever experienced any of the following responses when making your opening comments on a cold recruiting call (not referred by a third party)?

  • “I get calls from recruiters all the time. Take me off your list and don’t call again.”
  • “Tell me the name of the company and I’ll tell you whether or not I’m interested in listening to you.”
  • “I’m not interested in changing jobs.”
  • “How did you get my name?”

When statements like these interrupt your opening comments, it is typically an indication that the targeted recruit has had one or more negative experiences with recruiters and/or you have seriously mispositioned yourself on the call. Although you have no control over the recruit’s previous experience with recruiters, you can and should control your positioning on the call. This positioning begins with your opening comments, which should contain the reason for your call. If your reason for calling does not position you as having something of value for the recruit, they will immediately begin to implement an exit strategy from the call. When this occurs, the recruit stops listening and your call has little chance of success.

Cold Calling, How-To

Here’s How To Give Your Prospect A Reason to Hear You Out



Cold calling logo

Note: This is part two of a four part series on marketing calls. Last week, in part one, Terry talked about the first 30 seconds of making a cold call. Three goals must be achieved in that time, he said: Get attention; Avoid rejection, and; Establish a dialogue. The remaining parts of the series will publish on each of the next two Thursdays.

In our last article we stated, “The most critical skill set to develop is not getting people to listen to you. Rather, it is the skill of getting them to talk with you, to open up, to willingly share the specifics of their individual situations”. Many times on an initial marketing call (cold call), the first step of this process of “… getting them to talk with you …” can be accomplished by explaining the reason for your call.

Think in terms of the person you are calling. Put yourself into their position and you will understand that your call (as well as any unplanned call) will be viewed as an interruption to their busy workday.  Therefore, you must give them a reason to listen, you must stimulate in them an interest or curiosity, and you must engage them willingly in a two-way business dialogue.

Business, Cold Calling, How-To

You Have 30 Seconds to Answer: ‘Why Are You Calling Me?’



Cold calling logo

Note: This is part one of a four part series on cold calling potential clients. Each part of the series will appear on successive Thursdays through March 14.

Whether you are making an initial marketing call or a cold recruiting call, you have approximately 30 seconds to do three things:

  1. Gain the individual’s attention;
  2. Eliminate (or at least not create) a reflex rejection;
  3. Change the dynamics from a monologue to a dialogue.

The ultimate success of your call depends on your ability to accomplish all three of these objectives in a brief period of time. If you fail to accomplish any of these objectives, the individual you are calling will immediately begin to exit the call. Once this occurs, it is very difficult to turn them around.

Closing

Why the Client Should Never, Ever Discuss Money With the Candidate



Businessman backing off

Most recruiters and consultants realize the importance of preparing their candidates to “never, ever, discuss money” with one of their clients.  However, how often do you prepare your clients to “never, ever discuss money” with one of your candidates?

Recently, I received a call from a recruiter who wanted to discuss his process for working with clients.  As he detailed the step-by-step process, I was stunned when he reached the “offer stage” and stated, “… at that point I step out of the picture and allow my client and candidate to speak directly with one another about the specifics of the offer.”  Although I did not say anything initially, when he completed his description, I made this statement:

“Anytime you have a candidate and a client in direct discussion about compensation, you have lost control of the process.”

He then asked, “What if the client brings up the subject with the candidate?” or “… asks the candidate how much they are currently earning?”

My reply was: