Some great answers and all are correct, however I think it boils down to your ability to build and maintain relationships along with a strong work ethic tempered by rock solid values. Salesmanship is part of relationship building but I've found that Big Biller's have a strong sense of self and a code of consistency and values that carries them over the bumps in the road. Adding things like intelligence, tenacity, a sense of urgency are also part of the equation not the leas of which is your attitude. I've found that good recruiting for top tier performers is more of a life style than a job.
One word: Tenacity.
Being able to stay focused and enthusiastic even when it feels like no deal will close and no check is in the mail is key for success. Searches and candidates come and go as easily as the wind in Chicago, not letting it affect your attitude or enthusiasm for your job is how to be maintain a healthy work life.
Smile even when it isn't easy...
A sense of total professionalism in your approach language.
In doing so you’ll develop the ability to establish immediate impact thereby creating trust and demonstrating knowledge of their specific industry.
So you may be wondering how?
Research! Pure and simple. know the company, its products, services line and standing within their industry. A good place to start? Hoovers.com will list out a variety of SIC codes that identify industry specifics (also target recruiting list) along with public or private company, key execs, upcoming merger/acquisition deals and so much more.
I find I do well with a balance of Professionalism meets Easy Going.
My clients often complement me for not being a pushy salesman and still providing all the relevant information they need to make a decision.
They are often tired of headhunters telling them who to hire.
I make it clear to my clients that I'm not going to cry if they pass on my Packaging Engineer and I don't get to buy a new waverunner this month.
There are so many skills needed as noted before. I'll just add a few:
Follow through=consistant communication with all parties.
Assessment=intense listening on the initial recruiting call (and all through the process) to hear and understand what the candidate is really saying, not just the normal platitudes.
If I had to select only one I'd say the ability to develop rapport quickly. There is such a limited amount of time to build trust and credibility and if those two things are not in play instantly then there isn't the time to listen, or sell or any of the other essential tools one must have in the toolbox.
The comments added here are great. It's also important to really care about the candidate as well as the client, and making a good match. If the hiring company is happy and the job seeker / new employee is happy, and you've made a good long-term fit, your retention ratio is high and you get repeat business and great referrals!
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