Business Growth for Recruiters: Key Mistakes to Avoid

by Veronica Blatt

Image of man holding head representing mistakes in business growth for recruitersI came across a blog entry from Greg Savage (The Savage Truth), 10 massive blunders I have made in recruitment and wanted to share some other ideas. Greg is the founder of leading recruitment companies Firebrand Talent Search, People2People and Recruitment Solutions. He is an established global leader of the recruitment industry and a regular keynote speaker worldwide. (Disclosure: NPA has hired Greg as a professional speaker/trainer on several occasions. NPA gets nothing from Greg for reading his blog and sharing comments here.)

Greg maintains that it’s difficult to run a successful recruiter organization. There are a lot of variables that can impact business growth for recruiters. I agree.

His list of 10 massive blunders includes the following:

  • Focusing too heavily on recruiter activity levels
  • Conversely, focusing too little on recruiter activity levels
  • Allowing recruiters to function as generalists who attempt to be everything to everyone
  • Hiring recruiters based on past success or education in the field for which they’ll be recruiting … instead of focusing on sales and recruitment skills. Industry knowledge can be learned.
  • Adding remote offices without strong, committed local management.
  • Waiting too long to cull mediocre performers in the hopes you can someday convert them into recruitment superstars
  • Compensation that is paid in the form of a high base salary, instead of offering a commission structure linked to high performance.
  • Getting top-heavy with managers who don’t run a desk
  • Assuming that a good recruiter will make a good manager
  • Taking his successful start-up company through an IPO

I love Greg’s list, and think it shows the kind of acumen that leads to business growth for recruiters. I would add the following:

  • Waiting too long to course-correct when the market fluctuates. Too many times I’ve seen owners of recruiting firms hamper their profitability by not cutting costs quickly or deeply enough when business is soft.
  • Failing to act boldly to take advantage of an economic recovery. There is a prime window to increase recruiting revenue at the early stages of an upswing. Savvy owners aren’t afraid to take a calculated risk by either adding rainmaking recruiters or branching out into a developing niche before the competition beats you to it.

What do you think of this list? What else stalls business growth for recruiters?

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Business Growth for Recruiters

by Dave Nerz

The economy is recovering, or at a minimum it is much improved from 2009 and 2010 levels, but are you seeing an increase in recruiter profits? Are you feeling that you have a plan in place for business growth for recruiters and your business?

If you want to be a very successful business owner or recruiter, so much of your success depends on focus.

Warren Buffet is quoted as saying, “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” That is why I am a proponent of a “Stop Doing This List.” In order to focus, we all must decide what we will stop doing to make time for the really important stuff. As with all things in life, moderation in the execution of an idea like this makes the idea more realistic. Don’t give up eating, sleeping, and breathing, but look for other things that add no long-term value to your focus and defined goals.

Here are some ideas I have been working on. It is a work in process for me so check back and I’ll let you know how it’s going.

  • STOP…Spending time on junk email. I have spent time setting up some really good filters on my Outlook so if it hits the “Junk Folder” it doesn’t even get a second look.
  • STOP…Doing things at or past the deadline. It takes less time to do these things on time or ahead of schedule. Less follow-up emails and reminders to worry about.
  • STOP…Sending very long emails. Pick up the phone it might even save you time.
  • STOP…Being disorganized. It takes time and creates stress.
  • STOP…Taking phone calls, emails, or meetings that do not align with your goals. If you made a commitment or if you see potential for profit, saving, learning, or growth, then go for it. Don’t turn off new ideas, but choose to be selective.
  • STOP…setting all meeting times for 30 minutes or 1 hour. If you set the expectation of an hour, it will last an hour. Try setting a 15 minute meeting instead of a 30 minute session. Or, be really strange and try a 12 minute meeting.

You get the idea. It is not easy and the old habits will die hard. But your sacrifice just might create some space to do something that increases recruiter profits and creates growth for your business.