Had a recent coffee with a mate and in turn we despaired, chuckled and grimaced when recalling recruiters we knew, worked with or had met over the years. So as a bit of a fun posting here's my guide to spotting if you're a Recruiment Bore.
You're a RB one if:
- You can't stop interviewing whoever you meet. Whether it's the taxi driver, the barber, someone at a party, another parent at parents' evening who find yourself judging if they're employable talent. I once knew a RB who I'm told even interviewed a lap dancer prior to his dance. Please please just refrain from asking at every opportunity for a short career snapshot and where your victim sees themselves in five years' time.
- All your friends are Recruiters. I'm all up for making friends through work but quite frankly most are work colleagues I get on with. Only some but not many are real friends. Real friends are people you hang-out with when not at work and only fleetingly ask how work's going as warm-up, small talk stuff whilst the wine is opened or BBQ lit. If you're discussing your placement pipeline whilst in the pub you need to get a wider social circle.
- You can't switch off. I have an Iphone and don't have a problem checking emails on holiday or dealing with urgent issues in the evening or at the weekend. It's kind of the world we live in now for many if not most professions. However, I do also own a much better interactive app called LIFE and whilst not at work I really like to live it as much as possible. If that sounds odd to you then you're a RB.
- You work a party or social event like it's a conference. You know sometimes it's OK not to greet everyone with a firm handshake and elevator pitch. You really don't have to leave them with a clear and positive impression of what you do, how you add value and where you can be contacted. Sometimes it's just much more fun spending a party getting drunk in the kitchen or being the first person on the dancefloor after the bride and groom.
- You read nothing but business books and in particular bad recruitment business books. Did ever any good come out of a business book? Really? Or do they just give you soundbites and maxims to inflict on others whilst reinforcing your own beliefs and life patterns? Try a novel. It might just make you a more interesting person.
- When asked the old chestnut "Who would be at your dream dinner party?" they're all multimillionaire business men or sporting heroes who know how to WIN and their formulas (in your opinion) are directly transferable to the recruitment industry. GO TEAM! Pass me electric meat carver please as I'm about to perform seppuku whilst Richard Branson, Arnold Palmer and Clive Woodward look on.
- Every tweet and status update on your social networks is a job posting. Yawn. Who cares? Not me. Guess what? Social media is social and not didactic.The clue's in the name. Yes it's a useful place to meet people, attract candidates and find clients but only by being a human and not a RB.
And here's the twist .... I know all about the above signs and symptoms as I'm a recovering Recruitment Bore who has displayed all the above at some time or another during my 14 year recruitment career. But as Ian Dury once said "I want to be straight" so I've managed to wean myself off thanks to the support network of wife, kids, family and mates who just don't take me (too) seriously - thank God. Thankfully I can now act supercilious and snigger into my coat sleeve when I meet tan-shoed, fudged-haired Mr Recruitment, or panel-dressed, killer-heeled Miss Recruiter and notice that they are a bore.