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The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession

Articles tagged 'motivation'


‘Time At Work’ Is Not a Success Metric

image source: Letheravensoar

image source: Letheravensoar

He can’t be serious, Jim thought. Jim been recruited away from a Fortune 500 firm by a fast-growing start-up, and it was his first day. The president of the company had just handed him a BlackBerry and said, “Keep this with you at all times.”


That Saturday morning, one of the founders sent an e-mail to the senior leadership team. By 5:00 p.m., there were more than 30 replies.

Jim soon learned that at this company, there was no concept of detachment from work. He grieved the loss bitterly, and his friends would mock him for stepping out of the bar to check e-mail at 10:00 p.m. while they were out for a few pints of beer. In a matter of months, Jim’s job began to seriously interfere with his relationship with his wife.

Ask Barb

Motivation Secret: “So What? Now What? Next!”

Ask Barb

Dear Barb:
I’m finding most of my candidates impossible to represent. They no-show interviews, don’t show up on their start date, or fall-off. I’m often afraid to pick up the phone because I don’t want to deal with another issue. My boss says to immediately pick up the phone, but it’s not easy with all the disappointments slamming me. How do I stay motivated?

Alexander B.
San Francisco, CA


What To Do When Your Office Is In A Malaise

Bored businesswoman - freedigital

Bored businesswoman - freedigitalYou got into this business years ago. You listened and learned and you became successful. Over the years your billings grew. Some of you decided to add people to your operation and your operation grew, and was also successful.

And then it happened. It seemed to come out of nowhere. First one recruiter went into a slump and then another and then the whole office seemed to be in a funk. Even your production, your ‘money in the bank’ desk, started to suffer. What happened and how do you get out from under this wet blanket of recruitment misery?

In this article, I am going to give you a six-step remodeling plan. This plan will work for those of you who work alone and for those of you who have an office of recruiters. Here are the steps:


13 Exercises To Help You Grow Mentally and Emotionally

13 things mentally

13 things mentallyIf there’s one thing the Internet loves better than celebrity news and cat videos it is lists. Especially lists about how to succeed at something.

There are “Six Steps to Successful Menu Planning,”Ten “Easy” Steps To Financial Success,” even “7 Steps to a Successful Bake Sale.” And that’s just the tip. But when Amy Morin, a psychotherapist who specializes in parenting issues, wrote about the 13 things mentally strong people don’t do, she couldn’t have guessed how popular it would become.

Since her article first appeared on LifeHack, it has become a viral sensation, reposted or written about thousands of times. The Forbes version alone went viral, getting some 4.5 million views.

Business, Motivation

Why the December Holidays Are Great for Recruitment

productivity - free

productivity - freeYears ago a recruiting colleague of mine and I had a difference of opinion.

We placed in exactly the same specialty niche, but we disagreed about which time of the year was the most productive for our business. He thought that the end of the year was the best for making placements. I thought the summer was best. So, he always made placements during the winter months and I did not. And I always made placements during the summer months and he did not. It wasn’t our niche that was operative here—it was our perception. We were living the life of self-fulfilling prophecies.

Now when recruiters call to ask my thoughts about shutting it down for the December holidays, I always relate that story. I remind them that salaries are still being paid and interviewing is still taking place. And then I add what I remember of an article I read some years ago discussing the reasons why recruitment flourishes during this time of year:

Ask Barb, Motivation

What Do I Do To Motivate a Stalled Team?

Ask Barb

Dear Barb:

I know my recruiters could produce more, but I don’t know how to motivate them. It’s like I want more for them than they want for themselves. My four senior guys seem burned out when the economy was difficult. Right now, we have business, but many of our good orders are not being filled, which is very frustrating. I’ve tried to encourage them. I’ve offered contests. I threatened to take action, and I even became a micro-manager, which I hated and so did they.

They are not costing me money, but they are not making me the profits I would like. I feel I already overpay them, so I’m not willing to motivate them with more money. Any other suggestions?


5 Techniques For Dealing With Professional and Personal Setbacks

Vinay Nadig
Vinay Nadig

Vinay Nadig

I talk about 20 core leadership secrets in my executive coaching, speaking and writing. But if someone asked me to name only one that can make an immediate impact, I would pick the behaviors to counter setbacks.

All of us have had (and will continue to have) some professional setbacks – prospects breaking off at the last moment after a seemingly agreeable interaction, clients refusing to renew, etc. While these examples are very specific to my situation, we all face setbacks as we strive to achieve our goals. It may be in our personal or professional lives, but setbacks and obstacles are here to stay with us.


Attitude Starts at the Top and Trickles Down

Attitude illustration - free

Attitude illustration - freeWhenever I am at a business, and the front office staff are unprofessional or disrespectful, I don’t blame the staff themselves. Usually attitudes for the company are formed at the very top of the organization. If the senior executives are mocking clients or lack appreciation for clients, that attitude will trickle down. Conversely, if senior executives demonstrate genuine respect for clients and staff, that positive attitude will spread through the organization.

So, what attitude are you spreading to your staff? How is this attitude affecting your clients?

Cold Calling, Motivation

How Spinning Can Make You A Better Recruiter

spin class recruiting

spin class recruitingFor the past few months I have been engaged as a consultant/mentor to a team of 35 IT recruiters, and I’ve been trying to figure out the activities that separate top performers from their less successful colleagues.

I think I’ve cracked it:

Uncomfortable is where the rewards are.

Funnily enough, it came to me in a spinning class (indoor cycling). I am a spinning instructor in my spare time, and teach three classes a week at Almaden Valley Athletic Club in San Jose.

Now, anyone can sit on a spin bike (or at a desk) and look like they are working. But to truly experience the magical powers of indoor cycling you need to get outside of your comfort zone and really pick up the pace. The payoff is huge: lower blood pressure, cardiovascular supremacy, rapid weight loss, improved strength and endurance, high self-esteem, improved appearance, to name a few. And you learn to love it because you love the results.

Bit what could this possibly have to do with recruiting?

Jeff's On Call!, Motivation

In the Placement Race, Placing is Winning

PTL recruiter resign letter

JeffOnCall_logoIn horse racing, coming in second is called “placing.” In our business, it’s called “nothing.” In our business, if you place, you’ve won. If you don’t, you might as well have been pulling a buggy around Central Park. No “runner ups,” “also rans,” or “second placers.”

The way to be a champion is to stay in shape. Physically, sure. But emotionally, too. It’s turf with holes, detours and roadblocks. If you don’t take it personally, you’re just not sensitive enough to be in the race. But if you do, you’ll be lowering your production. Maybe even think you’re “depressed,” “burned out,” or “stressed out.”

This is no small problem, but we’ve been helping placers overcome it for a few decades. Here’s a checkup from the neck up, and what we recommend to keep you on the track, trotting along.