Today’s guest blogger is Liz Carey, network coordinator for NBN. NPAworldwide and NBN merged in September 2014, and our two networks are working toward a full integration effective January 1, 2016. We look forward to having Liz as a regular part of our blogging team.
I admit it – I’m a Dancing with the Stars junkie. I was watching the other day, and realized that dancing is a great metaphor for the client / recruiter relationship. OK, recruiters don’t have to wear over-the-top costumes or beg for votes, but there is a careful and delicate ‘tango’ that they have to perform when dealing with both clients and candidates.
Most of the contestants on Dancing with the Stars are celebrities with no background in dancing, such as the youngest contestant, a 14-year-old actress. But she doesn’t miss a beat dancing with her professional partner. It shows that good dancers are not only born, they are trained. The same applies for great recruiters – with experience, you learn to lead your clients and candidates and move the number (job order process) forward.
While dancers are judged a great deal on their technique, it’s not all about footwork — one of the judges noted that a couple’s performance was good, but lacked chemistry and connection. The better connection you have with your client, the easier it is to waltz with them, and the more likely it will be that they come back to you to be their “dance partner.” The more chemistry you have with a talented candidate, the more likely they are to recommend you to their colleagues. In both dancing and recruiting, communication is key. Communication should be constant — always return calls and emails in a timely manner – and it should be clear. It is important to understand a client’s expectations and for you to also communicate yours, so nobody is “out of step.”
When a dancer forgets a step, trips on their dress, or even loses a shoe, it’s important to get right back in the dance without missing a beat. Similarly, every recruiter will face a setback at some point in their career — whether a fall-off or a candidate backing out, it’s important to anticipate and adapt. Sometimes you get thrown a curveball: if a client gives you a job order in a less-than-desirable location, highlight a the great compensation, benefits or relocation package; For a role that may not pay well, entice candidates with the role’s other perks, like a great work/life balance or company culture.
One final point – sometimes, the best dancers aren’t the obvious ones. In this season’s cast, there is a veteran who is missing an arm and leg. Because of his physical limitations, his dance partner choreographs their dances to best suit his strengths. Similarly, you may have an extremely talented candidate that doesn’t exactly meet every single one of your client’s qualifications and specifications. You don’t have to dance the hustle – just adapt and impress with the mastery of the dancer’s strengths. If the talent is there, and the client is willing to teach a little bit of choreography, that candidate could be the next star.
Image courtesy of https://arthurmurray.com/