Here we go again. Personnel consultant just died of old age. Headhunter sounded a bit too nasty and clandestine. After all how can you introduce someone as “This is our corporate headhunter”. Real headhunters kind of liked it but it didn’t play well in the board room. Recruiter wasn’t really classy enough for those who wanted to “differentiate” themselves so we moved up a notch to “Executive Recruiter”. (maybe that happened as we got older and started recruiting people who make over minimum wage.)
“Executive Search” has a snob appeal all it’s own but their folks had a problem calling themselves “Executive Searchers” ( how dumb does that sound?)
“ Talent Acquisition Specialist” was and is just goofy enough for everybody under 30.. Human Capital Manager was so damn pompous that most folks objected to being designated as human capital so that one evolved to VP of People, ain’t that earthy. (your loyal subjects salute you , you royal horses rear).
Manager of Talent Branding (oh just puke, that doesn’t even make any sense to anyone). Maybe those are all those kids in the HR department who tell us it’s not our candidate because they touched them first. In line with that maybe we should all “Brand” our candidates. Then I could ask the internal recruiter if the candidate had an M7 on their left hip. If they do then there is no question as to it being my referral. It’s wearin my brand ain’t it ?
In the past few months I have noticed that those who are always looking for some new word or phrase to describe what we do or have some sort of damage to the ego (if not the Id ) have started to say, are you ready for it,
“I am a recruitment specialist.” “I do recruitment” I am in the Recruitment Business”. “We are a recruitment firm”.
Here’s some little know facts about the word recruitment.
Recruitment in the scientific community means the development of a new generation of organisms. So watch your silly butt if you are recruiting in the scientific community and you are dense enough to tell some scientist that you are a recruitment specialist. They may just say, “oh sorry we don’t do that kind of research.”
Recruitment in the healthcare community refers to a hearing loss resulting in certain sound pitches being painful to a person. So if you are recruiting in the healthcare industry and tell someone that you are in the Recruitment Business or you do Recruitment. They might just tell you that they don’t need any hearing aid salesmen or ask you if there has been any new research to correct the problem of recruitment..
“Recruitment” may be an acceptable term for the Brits and the Aussies but folks, in the good ole US and of A. We are recruiters and we do recruiting. If you want to really think about how preposterous it sounds to say you do recruitment try this.
Suppose that Engineers didn’t do engineering, they did engineerment.
Suppose that Accountants didn’t do accounting, they did accountment.
Suppose that doctors weren’t involved with healing, they did healment.
Suppose that scientists didn’t do research they did researchment.
Suppose that consultants didn't do consulting they did consultment.
One could go on forever until it got to the point that kids didn’t get involved in Cub Scouts or Girl Scouts. They would get involved in scoutment.
The conversation might go something like this: “Hey this is John in Recruitment, I would like to speak with Larry in engineerment or Judy in accountment if neither of them are available please buzz Phil in researchment.” Oh and is Dr. Dooby doing healment today or is this the day he goes on the scoutment trip with his kids?" "If Dr. D is out i need to speak with that guy who is here doing consulment on the new building plans." "Say .how do you like being in receptionment?"
All I can tell you for sure is that the next time somebody tells me that they work for a recruitment firm doing recruitment, I am going to start laughing and tell them they have the wrong number. I am a recruiter. I do recruiting. I do not sell hearing aids and I am not developing the next generation of any organism, albeit sometimes I think that might be the case.
What say you, are you a recruiter who does recruiting or are you into hard of hearing , next gen organisms?
(thank god my spell check caught the misspell of that last word).
Excellent post Sandra. It is a struggle especially whilst introducing yourself.
Unike, I'm a banker, or I'm a lawyer, or I'm a doctor. I used to say, " I work for a Recruitment agency" and invariably the person would go, "er what?" now I simply say "I'm a Recruiter" - that gets a much better response.
ps - I'm from Australia and yes I agree with you Sandra, over 90% of the recruiters here say "I'm in Recruitment"
I think the more stilted and pompus people try to sound the more difficult it is to understand. Your example is perfect. If it has always been that way most folks "get it". It's when we have to fluff it up that we create the looks that remind me of the look a dog gets when you make a high pitched noise.
I sent a tweet to a kid the other day asking if he was interested in a job in Dallas or if any of his friends might be. He came back and said the he had another year before he graduated but he would ask his colleagues. Colleagues??? I thought college kids had buddies, friends and frat brothers. Colleagues indeed, you are a baby programmer, you have geek buddies or at best fellow students. Doctors and Scientists have colleagues and only after they have been out of fellowship for a few years. My word picture was some goofy kid in tennis shoes with his baseball cap on backwards with sunglasses on his head saying, "Hello colleagues, any of you giving consideration to Dallas after you matriculate. Crap!
You mean like . . "Moment"? The act of Mo? What about Larry and Shep and Curly?
Martin H.Snyder said:
(Latin: a suffix; result of, means of, act of; place of action)
The suffix -meant is a final word element derived through Middle English and French from the Latin suffix -ment(um), originally used to form agent and action nouns from verbs, now used to form nouns and denominative verbs in several related senses:
- "An action, process, or skill" denoted by the combining root: rearmament, tournament, management.
- "A result, object, or agent of an action" named by the joining root: entombment, enthrallment, agreement.
- "The means or instrument of an action": implement, medicament, reinforcement.
- "The place of an action" named by the first root: battlement, ambushment, settlement.
- "A state or condition" specified by the first root: bewilderment, predicament, bereavement.
The verb combinations show no change in basic form: cement, compliment, lament.
Principal parts: -menting, -mented, -mented.
Related forms: -mentum (singular); -menta, -menti, -ments (plurals).
I do like the word Recruitment for describing the overall function, but not for the people doing it, who are best termed " Recruiters". It's way better than "Talent Acquisition", which is the WORST.
this one is the object of resurrectment. Tom that is funny.
This is hilarious, Sandra
(Occupational Mobility Expert)
I'm currently the "fashion plate in HR on the first floor who helps you fill jobs." Yes, that's how I've been described. LOL I'm a Recruiter. I hate that damn "Talent Acquisition Specialist." Who came up with that one????