Is your desk really ready for 2005? Take this assessment and find out. On a scale of 1 10, with 10 being the highest score, rank yourself on the following:
1. Have you discussed your upcoming year with a coach, mentor, friend, colleague, or consultant? In other words, are you accountable?
2. Do you have a specific strategy for your year?
3. Have you clarified and written down what your ideal prospect client looks like? Size, location, number of employees, types of positions, level of decision-maker, fee range
4. Have you identified your unique selling proposition?
5. If you are a manager or owner, have you crystallized your firm’s values, vision, and mission?
6. Is your web presence up to date?
7. Do you have a specific strategy of marketing for new clients outside of trolling through cold calling?
8. Have you created a budget for the year?
9. Do you have annual targets set?
10. Have you set your personal development goals?
80 100: You’re off to a good start.
60 80: You have the right idea and are cognizant on where to make improvements.
Below 60: You are either new to the business or have to make some drastic changes.
Let’s look at each of these points and break them down one by one.
1. Accountability. Nothing happens with recruiters unless someone else is watching. This is the biggest issue I see among veteran recruiters in my workshops, coaching, and consulting. It’s the fact that a solo practitioner is a solo operator and if they don’t have someone to keep them focused, it’s easy to get off track. If you don’t have the benefit of working in an office with other recruiters, consider joining your state association or a network. Get active and get feedback from the perspective of others. How do you know where your deficits really are unless you get input from someone else? Discuss your projections with a colleague about what you intend to accomplish for 2005 and you’ll increase the odds of hitting your targets by at least fifty percent.
2. Strategy. This business is more than just cold calling. I can’t believe there are still recruiters in our business that believe all you need to do is make so many calls per day. Success in our business takes a deliberate and focused effort in the right direction. Why take chances with something so precious as your time? You need a strategy, otherwise known as a direction, to keep the odds high of you actually going somewhere.
3. Identifying ideal prospects. What does your ideal client look like? If you’ve never done this before, take a few minutes and write down what the ideal client looks like that you would love to have call you later today to give you a search. Where would that company be located? What would the position be? Who would you be dealing with in the company? What would your fee be? Where would the position be located?
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4. Your unique selling proposition tells the world what is unique about you and how that benefits others. If you’ve never thought about this before, you are not hitting your full potential. Identify the uniqueness of who you are and the firm you are with and start exploiting it to your advantage.
5. Values, Vision, Mission. If you are an owner or a manager and haven’t clarified the values, vision, and mission with your team, then you are missing out on helping your team understand why they come to work everyday. It’s more than the income. Start reading leadership books. Start with anything by Covey, Maxwell, or Blanchard. The main building blocks of an organization lie in identifying, clarifying, and articulating the beliefs and premises (values), the purpose (mission) and the direction (vision) of the organization.
6. “Dude, where’s my site?” It’s unbelievable but there are actually recruiters without websites. Without any sort of web presence, you lose credibility. There’s no excuse for not having one other than arrogance, ignorance, or bad business sense. Go to www.godaddy.com and get a website for eight bucks a year. You can even use one of their templates to make an above-average looking site in just a few hours for less than fifty bucks.
7. Getting the business. Do you still cold call for clients using the ‘Hey, you don’t know me and there’s no other reason for me to call you other than to try to sell you on my services’ approach? Why on earth are you spending your time on the least effective way to generate business? Yes, it works, but so rarely. Consider the probabilities of you actually reaching a decision-maker who, at that particular point in time, has an opening for your unique specialty which justifies him giving authorization for a huge fee to a complete stranger. If you’re going to call someone, call them with something that will actually benefit them like a great candidate. At least that way they’ll actually listen to you instead of politely tolerating your droning on and on about how great a recruiter you are. Realize that there are other ways to get business. It’s what the rest of corporate America does and it’s called marketing. Start reading books on it and get an education. Read anything by Jay Abraham. It’s what your best competitors do to keep their funnels full. If you’re not doing it, then you’re losing business.
8. Budgets. They aren’t for losers. They are for smart business people who recognize the limitations of their resources and want to prioritize them.
9. Annual targets. You need them. Without them you are directionless. Consider downloading the annual billing goal tool from the free download section of my site: www.recruitingmastery.com/products.html. It’s at the top of the page.
10. Personal development. The cool thing about this business is that the more you grow as a person, the more your income grows. If you want a link to an article that gives you a complete system of personal development goals, email me at email@example.com.
This business is about probabilities. You have got to start doing those things which have a high likelihood of a positive outcome. Start thinking this way and do those things which increase your odds. You deserve it. You deserve 2005 to be your best year ever.