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Wanting to help people - Reason enough to be a recruiter?


The second half of 2017 was the best Careertrotter has seen by far, placement after placement and more inbound leads than ever before.

We need to build on this, take advantage of this momentum and grow our team of recruiters

Which brings me right on to topic - I’ve been recruiting for new potential recruiters for the last two months and often I’m disappointed by the answer I’m given on why people like to become a recruiter. The main or only reason I hear a lot is: 

“I’d like to help people” 

When I receive this answer I probe more to see if there is something more substantial but often, that’s it! Don’t get me wrong, we do help people, we help them a lot! Not just with the interview process etc. we advise them on what cities and countries are best suited to their needs, the cost of living, what it is like to live abroad etc.
However, as I always explain to the “wannabe recruiter” that as recruiters, the people we help are actually highly in-demand and should be able to find work without our help as well. Multilingual candidates don’t always come to us and it is up to us to find them. If you really want to help perhaps you need to help the people who are in long-term unemployment and become a career-counsellor, not a recruiter

Recently, I interviewed a potential recruiter who “wanted to help people”. I then told this person a story about a Dutch speaking girl that literally fell into my lap when standing in the train One day on the train. The train took off too quickly and she lunged backwards, apologised and started talking in Dutch to her friend who was with her. As a multilingual recruiter, I butted into the conversation and I asked (in Dutch) what she was doing on the train. She on her way home from work not far from the last stop. I asked her if she was working with X company, which she was and therefore I knew she was earning X salary.

I began discussing a job I had that might interest here, it just happened to be several stations closer to her home, better hours, better salary and better benefits. Several weeks later this Dutch girl started the new job that I discussed with her. She was happy in her previous job and was not looking for me to help her. However, as a recruiter, I always keep my eyes and ears open and take a chance when I see one. 

As recruiters, we deal with a lot of people that are not looking for our help, yet we have the opportunity to make people’s lives and careers better than they currently are. We need to be comfortable talking with people that are not looking for help but down the line, they might be thankful for that unexpected call or in the above case interruption in someone’s personal conversation.

I didn’t get into recruitment because I’d like to help people. Of course, I do like it when we make a candidate really happy and I have changed peoples lives in ways I did not imagine before. I have created couples that married and had babies, people that only moved abroad for a year are now permanent residents and of course many careers have blossomed. The reason I joined recruitment is that I was told it is perhaps the most difficult sales job in the world and I wanted that challenge. My previous employer introduced me to the world of recruitment and sold the job well to me.  The “product” we sell to our client is a human being, a person with a mind of their own, and recruitment is the only dual sales process in the world whereby we advise and sell to client and candidate at the same time. 

So if your only desire is to help people don’t become a recruiter but a career-counsellor, charity worker etc. In my eyes, you will need more of a reason to become a recruiter than just to help people. If you want to test yourself and have every day bring you new challenges, interesting conversations and targets, talk to me about becoming a Careertrotter recruiter