You can read all the books, listen to tapes and watch videos that will give you every technique under the sun to encourage clients to give you job orders.
You can go to the other extreme and read, listen and watch about how you build strong client relationships in order to provide a solution-orientated consultative recruitment process.
Whilst both of these areas contribute to success as a recruiter, they come second to the first principle of sales.
"Are you speaking to people that buy what you are selling?"....failing to do this will almost certainly leave you struggling to hit your monthly fee targets.
Before you commit time to a meeting or regularly calling a client you need to be asking yourself three questions:
1: Do they buy what I am selling? - Have they hired in the last 3 months, Are they hiring right now or can you identify a catalyst in the organisation (someone leaving or a reorganisation) that is likely to mean they spend in the next 6 months
2: Are they able to buy from me? - Recruitment outsourcing, internal recruitment teams and preferred supplier agreements are more effective than ever at preventing leakage placements that take place outside of formal agreements. This means that not only will it take you a long time to find a crack, if you do, the chances are it will be closed very quickly leaving you with a single placement (if you are lucky) for all your efforts. Focus your efforts on companies with lower barriers to entry, (i.e PSL with proven leakage or the thousands of companies with no agreements.)
3: Are they likely to buy from me? - you may not know this until you have had a few calls, but sometimes they may just not like you! Be prepared to move on before you commit too much time.
The moral of this post is that the scarcest commodity for a recruiter is not job orders or candidates but time. The most successful recruiters are ruthless with their time. Be ready to cut loose when you think you are not getting anywhere. You may be thinking of the legendary stories of persistence from old school recruiters, but in reality, for every story of persistence there are 10 careers that ended whilst still waiting for someone to call.
In essence - look for a 'yes' or a 'no' from your prospective clients....run the other way when you get a 'maybe'.