John Nilon, Recruiting Expert: The Real Value

In the scope of our trips throughout North America, we at Recruiter Life are privy to some of the most forward-thinking executive recruiters. These are not the obligatory “Knights of the Round Table” type that continuously write the same bland material in their perdurable fashion while they stroke each others’ egos and share their links for search engines to pick up. No, these are key players who are making lasting differences for their clients and impacting people’s lives in positive ways.

John Nilon, the founder of JN Solutions, Inc., is a super star in our eyes and is clearly at the forefront of the pharmaceutical arena. We were honored to spend a day with him and Janet Shapiro, one of his executive directors, while tapping into their mind’s eye.

They shared with us their views on the stigma that has spawned recruiters from the very day some word-craftsman penned the name: Headhunter. They also talk about the benefits candidates can gain by interacting with recruiters and keeping their presence at the forefront for future opportunities that might surface their way.

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By adding value to their lives, you’re turning a negative connotation (headhunter) into a positive (consultant).


3 Comments on “John Nilon, Recruiting Expert: The Real Value

  1. No offense to John and Janet intended at all… but I know at least 74 other recruiters in one group and another 100 or so from other groups I work with who could have made the same video. This strikes me more as a point every headhunter/recruiter should hit at some point in his/her career than some kind of unique viewpoint. I have no idea who Jim might be referring to in his “Knights” comment.
    I embraced the term headhunter many years ago and I earned my client and candidate relationships by providing value…not by describing it. Again. NO disrespect to John and Janet. My quibble is with the way this was framed by Jim Shaki. It just ‘feels’ like the introduction was written by someone who has not done any recruiting. Like maybe he has seen a number of recruiters but has not seen many Sr. ones who ALL tend to say what John and Janet say. That said, John and Janet are great models. I am happy to see them in our business and I hope one day more recruiters will talk this way at an earlier stage. And the video was very well produced!

  2. Hello Dave,

    For the past three years, I’ve interviewed hiring managers from Microsoft, Pepsi, Hartford Life and other Fortune 500 companies to top recruiters in the Pinnacle Society, IACPR, etc. along with Mom & Pop operations found in a number of associations throughout North America. Everyone from C-level to Staffing has been captured on video.

    In conclusion, you happen to agree with me: “John and Janet are great models”. That’s why we brought them to the forefront.

  3. I agree that the points made in the video are very important and are not well understood by many, even today after so many years of recruiting. Dave’s reply makes a point that the Professional Recruiter knows this already, and the “wannabe recruiter” does not. More importantly and unfortunately, many hiring authorities don’t know the difference until they engage in a conversation with the recruiter. I’m happy to say that more and more, clients/hiring authorities are becoming more aware every day the difference between the two. The next hurdle, which is normally(not always) the H.R. representatives. A seasoned, experienced H.R. representative can identify the difference. One must continue to knock on that door until they reach that person who has a grasp of what a real Recruiter does and is. There lies that opportunity to develop the partnership desired. The fact that we bring an added value to an organization is what many clients fail to understand because they are bombarded by newbies or rookies, or what many called the “used car salesman” type of recruiter. Clearly, as professional recruiters, we all know the industry can be lucrative and hence it does sometimes attract some unethical individuals whose only goal is to make a “sale” placement. That is the hurdle we all face in weeding through those who’ve knocked on the door, and made the Professional Recruiter less likely to be accepted let alone heard. This is by far one of the most frustrating facets in the process. Although, as John and Janet are reiterating, once one has established that point to their prospect and have gained their attention, they begin to respect you and are then open to communicate their needs and frustrations in finding the right candidate for a specific opening or openings. This is only one point, but it is the crucial point since it is the opening dialogue and presentation of yourself, your firm, your commitment and ethics in a field that has been filled with people that simply don’t care about the client or candidate. That type of headhunter (as I don’t even feel they deserve the title of Recruiter) will eventually go to the wayside year after year. I firmly believe that my toughest to reach prospects have always been my best and long-term clients once they have witnessed the process, the diligence, the education of client and candidate and the tenacity to acheive a partnership – not simply make a placement. (that may feed you for a day, but won’t get you anywhere since the respect is not established whatsoever.

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