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The Fordyce Letter

Straight Talk for the Recruiting Profession

Articles tagged 'networking'

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?

How-To, Motivation

Great Peers Will Help You Help You Soar


EagleWe’ve all heard about the power of the peer group. Tony Robbins says that you tend to play the game of life at the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Think about it for a moment. Who do you surround yourself with most often, and how do they influence you? What level are these people operating at, and what are their standards in key areas of life, such as business, finance, health, relationships, contribution, and spirituality?

Let’s say you have a workout partner that you regularly go to the gym with. Are they the type who tolerate laziness, and let you off the hook easy if you don’t feel like working out on a given day? Or do they scream at you to give them two more reps, even when you’re already at failure, and feel like you’ve given all you’ve got? Which person is going to help you achieve more? Anyone who works out knows that those last two reps give you 90% of the growth!

It would make sense that people who are healthy and fit surround themselves with others who make healthy lifestyle choices, as opposed to people who drink, smoke, and eat like crap. People who have strong religious beliefs congregate with others who share their convictions. Successful business owners like to spend time with others who also share their desire and commitment to success.

Relationships, Technology

The Best of The Fordyce Letter 2011, #2 — Get Out From Behind the Desk and Network


Editor’s note: Paul DeBettignies’ article was the 2nd most popular article on The Fordyce Letter in 2011. It originally ran in March.

I know, I know… smile and dial.

More phone calls equal more job orders, candidates and send outs. More send outs equal more placements.

I get it – I really do. But after thirteen years as a sole practitioner, I have learned that I need to get out from behind the desk every now and then, or I fear that the headset will become permanently fixed to my head.


Got Community?


Community as an aspect of our daily lives – not the television show – has become another buzzword. Many of us crave community, be it a gated community or online community. But what is a community? When you experience community you know you have it and many times it isn’t even labeled a community.

Why are we part of communities? There are many intrinsic values that are associated with being part of a community. While we sometimes think we are best alone, it is when we are part of a community that we truly shine. A community allows us to share common concerns and challenges, shouldering similar burdens. Communities rally around causes or threats; you just have to look at any of the recent disasters to see people pulling together. I live in the Washington, D.C. area – and recently we’ve been no strangers to natural disasters. After we lost power due to ______________ (fill in the blank: earthquake; flood, hurricane – we’ve had it all recently!) our community was enriched as everyone was talking face-to-face since they weren’t sitting in front of some form of an electronic box for a change.

A key component of the community experience is time. I know I am part of a community when I go to my farmers market and can say hello to many community members. My purpose in going to the farmers market is to buy my weekly groceries, but more importantly to feel part of something. My returned value is the great food and the camaraderie I experience being with like-minded individuals. The community for me was built over 10 years of my participation in it.

Community is an experience, and contrary to the stock valuation of companies who feel that “community” has monetary value, the community “experience” is the true value of the community.

What, you may ask, is the value of community in our line of work? After all, aren’t a lot of us competing against one another for similar (or sometimes the same) clients? Let’s take a look, shall we…

Fordyce Forum, The Business of Recruiting

Life Is All About Choices…


With my fortieth birthday fast approaching, I’ve been thinking a lot about getting old or, to be more precise, how to avoid getting old. It’s a natural response to a milestone birthday. Well-intentioned friends console me with comments like, “Don’t worry about getting old. It sure beats the alternative,” or “Any day above ground is a good day.” I know they mean well, but that’s sort of a low bar and frankly I’m not convinced. Using the “above ground equals good day” logic, I should be ecstatic when I’m flying. I mean that’s 30,000 times better than just being above ground, right?!

The best advice I received was from a friend who is closing in on seventy. Instead of reassuring me that “40’s not old”, he offered these words of wisdom: “Getting old is a choice. If you stay curious, stay connected and find ways to celebrate, you’ll never be old.”

So, chairing the Fordyce Forum isn’t simply attending a conference for me. It’s an important part of my longevity program. 

Relationships, Technology

Get Out From Behind the Desk and Network


I know, I know… smile and dial.

More phone calls equal more job orders, candidates and send outs. More send outs equal more placements.

I get it  - I really do. But after thirteen years as a sole practitioner, I have learned that I need to get out from behind the desk every now and then, or I fear that the headset will become permanently fixed to my head.

Celebrating Successes

Celebrating Successes: Arlington Resources, Inc.


My name is Patty Casey, and I am the President of Arlington Resources, Inc. in Rolling Meadows, IL, which specializes in the placement of Human Resources professionals for direct hire, contract, and temporary services. We are very supportive of the many people in job transition today – so much so that we have actively made it a passion of ours. We host two professional networking groups at our office, and I run a networking group in the community.

We have two areas of placement, including Human Resources professionals through Arlington Resources, Inc., and Accounting and Finance  professionals through Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Over six years ago, we started with our human resources group holding bimonthly meetings specifically to provide networking opportunities for those in transition. We meet so many great people in our profession, and we wanted to help as many people as we can and give back to the human resources community.


Short Term Cash vs. Long Term Wealth Through Your Recruiting


As in any business, the world of Recruiters, “Headhunters”, “Executive Search Professionals”, etc. includes the good, the bad, and the ugly. There are those in it for some good cash for now, and those in it to build a great long-term sustainable business. Which are you?

This industry is characterized by a glut of new recruiters when times are good, and dramatic reductions when times get tough. It’s an easy business to get into, but it’s a tough business to stay in during economic downturns. I often tell people… “This is a business that, when times are good, there’s almost nothing better. There’s a lot of relatively easy money to be made. However, when times are bad, there’s almost nothing worse. The ‘gravy train’ dries up very quickly and companies recruiting budgets disappear.”

There are a number of factors that go into making someone successful in this industry over the long run. However, I believe one differentiator is being willing to add value for people whether you’re likely to make an immediate buck or not. Especially in a down economy, when many good prospective candidates, and perhaps some former (and potentially future) clients are out of work, finding ways to be of help to them pays great long-term dividends. Do you invest significant time and energy into people that can’t be of immediate value to you? Do you view people as people, or simply evaluate them by whether they are worth money to you or not? Are you willing to find ways to assist people that don’t even seem to be of potential value to you down the road?

Many recruiters do, and many, many recruiters don’t.


Networking With Hiring Managers


Why should a recruiting firm start, develop, and maintain relationships with hiring managers as a key activity? We have found that over the years the largest contribution to our ability to survive in an ever more competitive environment has been our desire to establish and maintain strong rapport with hiring managers. It didn’t start as a planned activity – it just happened over time. The benefits have been many. It’s much easier to understand “the secret sauce” of openings when you have known the hiring managers over a long period of time. Having worked with them as candidates in the past adds to a level of credibility the competition cannot easily match. And being able to get their opinions about their ex-co-workers is priceless.

With the benefit of hindsight, the formula for successful networking with hiring managers is rather simple. You start by concentrating your attention on the best people in your industry. You get to know them professionally and, quite often, personally. You learn what they do and don’t do that makes them rising stars. You try to get opinions from people who know them about what makes them special and then discuss it with them.  In this way, you are developing relationships with both current and future hiring managers.

If you can create a connection when these people are happily employed and are not looking to change jobs, you build a relationship that could weather a storm for many years. Sooner or later, when they decide to look for new opportunities, you are there to help and advise. You build your rapport over a long period of time – someone with less than 10-15 years of experience in the industry is seldom senior enough to have influence in the hiring process.


Nudge Neil: Boost Your Network


Q. Neil, I have been trying to take advantage of the slowdown to network with a lot more candidates for my future relationships. However, I was wondering if you have any tips to make it easier to source names?

A. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am that I am now getting more and more questions about the candidate side of the biz!

Sure, job orders still aren’t the easiest to come by, but the good recruiters know that the Yin to the recession Yang is that there are now great super candidates around who would have been virtually impossible to connect with a few years ago. The GOOD ONES know that this is the time to seize those relationships that will yield plenty of fruit in the future!

It makes me cringe when people tell me that they aren’t recruiting as much because they “don’t have to.”

“Job orders are what we need,” they tell me. The candidate flow drops and the focus on recruiting dwindles. They say they have plenty of people to fill any jobs they get. BUT THEY MISS the point, don’t they! So, I hope you are a good one and that you get that this is the time to CARPE DIEM! Work your tail off to meet and network with as many candidates as possible. You know how that works. Just like LinkedIn, they tell someone about you who tells someone and voila. The more you meet, the more leads you get (that’s a whole different topic), the better the quality of your sendouts (or temp fills), the less likely a falloff will be (or shortened assignment), the more likely you will get unsolicited candidate referrals from them, the more likely some will turn into clients in the future, yada yada yada.

So, start recruiting and sourcing! Now, remember this very simple tip. First, NEVER ask someone “who do you know who is looking.” UGGGGH!!! We never care about that. We just want to know good people. In fact, we just ask them to point us in the direction of any good people, “regardless of whether they are looking or not, in fact, I am sure they are not.”

That said, this still doesn”t work well, and you know it. That is why most recruiters stop asking it all of the time! Lets face it: when you ask someone that, even if you ask it the right way, they will likely tell you the famous “nobody comes to mind.” Well, that is the normal reaction. So, what you have to do is make them “come to mind.” And you simply do that via the power of visualization. It is quite simple, but to get someone to come to mind you need to direct the mind and put them in the mind.

ALWAYS ask very specific visual questions when sourcing. For example, instead of “who do you know who is really good,” you can ask a better question: “who do you know who is really good in your current department.” Even better: ask them to “picture their office right now and think of all of the players there in your discipline. Then ask them to think of the person or people who everyone seems to respect or who the go-to people are. Get it? If you recruit BIG 4 CPAs, for example, ask them to go back to last year when they sat in the bullpen waiting for an assignment and ask them who those people were and who were the good ones who were always requested. In other words, just ask very specific questions so that they can place their mind in the right place. Then, it’s just about impossible for most people to say that “nobody comes to mind.” Happy sourcing!

Ask Neil any question that is vexing you! Have trouble closing deals or selling? Neil can help! To ask your question and possibly have it published online, email Neil at Neil.Lebovits@TheDynamicSale.com and put the words Nudge Neil in the subject.

Neil Lebovits, CPA, CPC, CTS, before taking the industry by storm as a trainer, was a global president for Adecco, where he sat on the global executive team. Previously, he was the president and COO of Ajilon Professional staffing for North America, where he oversaw over 100 offices. He has done it all in the industry: Permanent & Temporary Placement, Sales, Branch Management, Regional Management, COO, & President. He founded his industry training & development company, http://www.TheDynamicSale.Com, in 2009. He shares the secrets and systems that he has developed and harnessed while working himself up over his 20+ years in the industry. A renowned leader, motivator, trainer, and speaker, he has appeared on Bloomberg TV, CNN, ABC news, CNBC, the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, and Smart Money. Learn more about Neil and sign up for his free online training course at www.TheDynamicSale.Com.