Welcome to issue 353 of the ukrecruiter newsletter.
only produce four issues of the newsletter a month so next week we are
off. We'll be back on the
Don't forget about the suppliers directory
on our site. For example, why not check out our list of PR
and Marketing Suppliers, all specialising in the recruitment
16th April 2008
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One: Selling with Emotional Intelligence (EQ) by Gaynor
Many psychologists are beginning to question the emphasis society places on the intellectual component of intelligence: the IQ. A leader in this shift of emphasis is Daniel Goleman, who argues that an individual’s effectiveness in social interaction and communication, through self-awareness and social sensitivity, should be recognized as an equally important component of intelligence: Emotional Intelligence, or
Consider Goleman’s argument in the context of the recruitment profession. The IQ is the key to success in academic fields; whereas the EQ is the key to success in any people-oriented field such as sales, or more specifically, Recruitment. Therefore, the recruitment industry needs to embrace the insights and analytical skills of selling with EQ
Stephen R. Covey believes that there are 5 key competencies of selling with EQ. My experiences over the 20 years I spent as a consultant have highlighted to me how essential it is for all consultants and resourcers to understand and utilise these 5 competencies in the sales process:
1. Awareness – As a recruiter, you need to be able to “See” yourself from outside yourself. You can achieve this through close observation, during a meeting, of whether or not the prospect appears comfortable with you. Great recruiters know that the key to putting a prospect at ease, is to closely observe their mannerisms, and adopt them, from volume of voice, to body language and gestures. The key point is this: People buy from people like them, because they are made to feel comfortable.
When I was in my first year as a consultant, I was meeting with a prospect who had a very reserved, emotionless style of communicating. I began to realise, as I watched his body language, that he was irritated by the loud voice and enthusiastic gestures that I naturally use. I decided to sit on my hands for the rest of the meeting, and lower my voice … seemingly small changes … and what do you know, he began to warm to me! He ended up becoming one of my Gold Clients of the time, and I still believe that if I hadn’t become more aware of my manner during that meeting, he wouldn’t have become a client at all!
2. Restraint – I believe that the ability to remain calm and relaxed in a difficult situation is a “Gift,” because it allows us to look at problems and issues in terms of solutions. Thus we control the problem, rather than the problem controlling us. Stress or anger at a problem is basically admitting defeat; if you were confident that a solution could be found, what would you have to worry or get angry about?
I once had a dispute with a client over a fee. The specifics of the situation do not matter, suffice to say that our conversation turned to the tone of thinly veiled personal insults. I realised afterwards (as he probably did too), that the issue had not been solved. Had I remained calm and exercised restraint, I could have formulated a mutually satisfying solution, but, as it turned out, the only winner was the problem itself.
3. Resilience – I like to define resilience as “The Art of Controlling Negative Emotions,” as opposed to letting them control you. I believe that resilience is one of the most important skills for a recruiter to possess. A resilient recruiter is able to push ahead and overcome the fear of “Rejection” associated with Cold Calls. A resilient recruiter experiences three client “Drop-offs” in a month, and looks and is motivated to make improvements to his candidate management, rather than feeling defeated.
I tend to take a tough stance on recruiters I train who refuse to make cold calls. Many assume that this is because I never suffered from call reluctance myself. This is not true. Indeed, early in my career, there were several times where I made cold calls with tears in my eyes. But the point is, I still made the calls. And that is what resilience is all about.
4. Empathy – The word “Empathy” is often used interchangeably with “Sympathy.” But it isn’t the same thing. Sympathy is compassion. Empathy goes a step further. It means to place yourself in someone else’s shoes, to gain insight into how they feel, what makes them tick, and what they need in terms of service and communication.
For the first few client meetings I did as a recruiter, I was so engrossed in my “Sales Pitch” that I neglected to address their needs as a person or as a client at all. It was all about me, and the great service I could offer. I learned the hard way that service, in any context, is selfless, it is about the needs of others, and recruitment service is no exception.
5. Rapport – Working with others, relationship-building. Most recruiters are very skilled at building rapport … until a challenge arises. The truly strong recruiter- client relationship, is one that can withstand disagreements and other difficulties, through a co-operative effort to find solutions to issues as they arise. Indeed, the ability to provide solutions proves that the relationship is indeed worth it!
This leads me back to the situation in Point 2 (Restraint): The dispute with a client over a fee. There was no co-operative effort to find a solution, which made the client feel, understandably, that this relationship was of no benefit to him. I actually called him later that day, to make amends and to try and offer a solution, but it was too late … the damage had been done. Needless to say, we never worked together again. The saying goes that it takes years to build up trust, and only seconds to destroy it. Co-operation is the key to strengthening rapport.
As you can see, the five competencies of EQ are essential competencies for all recruiters to have. Within these competencies lies the key to unlocking all the wonderful potential of your prospect and client relations. Start putting these skills into practice now, and try not to be surprised by the superb results!
Gaynor Lowndes, the Managing Director of The Recruitment Training Company and The Factory (an innovative private training college for the recruitment industry), has over 20 years recruitment experience, gained in both Australia and the UK. If you liked this article, consider Gaynor’s highly successful book “The Art of Recruitment”. Visit
www.trtc.com.au to place your order.
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Two: Opinion Piece - In Pursuit of Brilliance, Part Two by Dean
This second article continues with the theme of Quality
Control (the first article can be found here). This time the focus is on clients.
Clients can be awkward, frustrating and notoriously unpredictable. Just like candidates. Just like you, me and human beings everywhere. And that’s all they are – human. They are not super-beings with magical powers. They have the same hopes, ambitions, weaknesses and insecurities as everyone else.
What sort of impression are your consultants giving to clients, compared to your competitors? What sort of impact are they making, compared to your competitors? Are your clients receiving an exceptional level of service from all of your consultants/managers, or does it depend on which consultant they get? Are they order takers or expert advisors? Do they have the knowledge and confidence to enter into a debate with a client? Do they really know what they are talking about? What does the client learn from meeting your consultants that they can’t get from your competitors? Where is your competitive edge?
One of your client service objectives should be that the client regards you as the best firm they dealt with, whether you filled the vacancy or not. This will keep them coming back. It’s no good only being as good as the last job you filled. Client service needs to build a stream of revenue, not just a series of one-off assignments.
It would take a very long article to describe the long list of free tools, techniques, products and services, over and above great candidates, you could offer your clients. Why not have a team brainstorming session to see what you could come up with? Working smarter means you don’t have to throw a ton of cash at flashy corporate entertaining events in order to take business from competitors who have deeper pockets that you. Simply out-wit them.
The benefits of working smarter and providing exceptional service:-
* More influence and control leading to more jobs filled
* More repeat business
* More exclusives
* More client referrals (how often are you asking?)
* More clients converting to candidates
* More vacancies
* More fees
If the service you provide is no better or no worse than that that provided by your competitors, none of the above will apply to any great extent. You will continue to make the job harder than it needs to be.
Do you monitor client service? Are clients regularly called and surveyed? Do they then get feedback? What about client meetings? Are they monitored by Managers/Directors?
Boasting to a client that what makes you special is that you will “only submit details of relevant pre-screened candidates” is not a USP. It’s the very least you should be doing. Even so, there are firms and consultants in the market who consistently fail to meet even those miniscule service objectives.
Clients hear the same old bland corporate waffle every day of the week. Who are they going to be impressed with? You or your competitors? Who has the personal presence and credibility to influence a client? Who is merely a glorified salesman armed with no more than a truckload of objection handling and closing techniques? The best consultants with the best training, tools and techniques operate way beyond that kind of level.
Why not get some evidence to back up your claims? It can help your cause to provide some hard facts and figures as opposed to clichés about “world –class services” or “robust solutions”.
Bearing in mind what is most important to the client, here are some statements you might like to consider:-
”We have the best candidates”.
This is a very powerful claim if you can back it up. Not so long ago I made this statement to a client, going on to say, and prove, that in a straight fight with their 2 current suppliers over the previous 12 months we had filled 19 out of 20 jobs. We got the work.
“Our clients love the work we do. They think we are great.”
Find out the % of your clients who, having used you once, come back again. This is a much stronger statistic that the % of your turnover represented by repeat business.
“We are experts at filling vacancies”
What is your job fill ratio? The last team I worked with were filling 95% of their contingency perm jobs. That was a powerful testament to our effectiveness.
“Our temps will do a good job and they will fulfil their contracts”
Quote the % of contracts completed/extended/go perm.
“We take great care to give you candidates who will be a great fit for your company”.
Find out the % of your perm placements that are still with your client after 1/2/3 years. Find out the % who has been promoted.
Tell them about your brilliant after-sales care (Generally not recruitment sector strength).
There are others I could share with you but you get the idea.
At the very least clients will be impressed with the fact that you care enough about your product to measure and monitor its effectiveness.
So the question is could you, should you, be doing more for your clients to set yourself apart from your competitors?
Do your clients view you merely as job-fillers, or are you much more important to them than that?
Dean Gollings is a freelance recruitment trainer and coach. More information can be found at
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Recruitment Update (This section is sponsored
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Louise's UK Recruiter blog
Since the last newsletter Louise has posted the following:
Recruiters should check out Twitter
A Corporate Recruiter Uses Facebook for Onboarding and Offboarding
Alan Suggesting we Bin Women's CVs?
talks recruitment with Google
Recruiter LinkedIn Group - helping recruiters to connect
You can read Louise's UK Recruiter blog at http://ukrecruiter.typepad.com
You can keep up to date with
other recruitment blogs from the UK via the UK Recruiter blog
watch page at http://www.ukrecruiter.co.uk/blogs.htm.
Discussion Board Summary
Don't forget to visit The
Discussion Board. Current topics on the site include:
a recruitment agency vs hiring directly
based IT recruitment agencies
can't clients just make a decision!
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Recruitment Networking Event,
15th May, London
Our next Recruiter's Network evening takes place at 6pm on
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As usual we are taking bookings on a first come first served basis
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National Recruitment FIVES 2008 -
Supported by the REC and Recruiter magazine (and now UK Recruiter) the hunt is on to find the football stars of the recruitment industry. Held at top venues throughout the UK these events are a great networking opportunity, ideal way of building relationships with suppliers, partners and a fun day out for all involved. Azzurri Sports (the organisers) are seeking sponsors for the events and are offering sponsorship and advertising opportunities at cost price (ranging from programme advertising to pitch perimeter boards). The benefits are exposure to 1000s of recruiters and 100s of recruitment companies as well as exposure in leading industry publications. Please contact James Chiffi on 01483 715 580 or 07814 225 306, Email
Onrec Online Recruitment Conference & Exhibition, 3rd June, London
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screening candidates effectively and efficiently, how to utilise new Virtual World
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Tickets are £395 and include access to the full conference programme, opportunities to network with the Speakers, plus exhibitors and other delegates. Ticket also includes refreshments, hot sit down lunch and networking drinks reception after the event. This is the only UK event to offer you the opportunity to learn how you could be saving money and recruiting more efficiently by using the latest online recruitment technologies. Delegates also get a free copy of the Online Recruitment Yearbook 2008 (worth £30).
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