The Earmarks Of A “True Recruiter”

recruiter illustrationIn every strong market (or bubble) we see a mass entry of new talent into the job of recruiting. Blinded by the concept of easy money or the big deal, many with “people skills” find themselves testing the waters of the recruiting industry.

An often not talked about step-child of the technology industry, recruiting has slowly turned itself into a yearly billion dollar- plus market. With little appreciation of what lies ahead, and only simple greed to guide them, many people flock to the recruiting sector like miners to a gold rush. Shovel and pail in hand, they line up and wait for their turn to make money on the merry-go-round that has become corporate recruiting.

Recruiting (a/k/a headhunting) is often misunderstood. To some, recruiting is simply the role of filling jobs. To others, it is the art of people placement. Sometimes the difference between the two can be so subtle, that it is often overlooked.

“True” recruiters are not driven by the financial motivation, but by the satisfaction of a fulfilled search.

Of course, you can’t ignore the monetary reward for each completed search. But “true” recruiters are driven by the desire to succeed; they lose sleep over the thought of failure. The true satisfaction lies in the marriage of the perfect person with the perfect job.

With a constant eye on cutting edge technology and the top talent that is attached, a recruiter is always looking to stay relevant. As the market shifts and changes, we must be able to adapt and ride the wave where it takes us. It is important for us to keep one eye on the market at hand, and the other eye focused on the future ahead of us.

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To work as a recruiter is a badge of honor that is earned by working through the good markets and the bad. All recruiters have the ability to make a living in a good market. It is the ability to take pride in your work in a bad market that shows what you are made of.

There are a lot of recruiters out there in the world; some hoping to make a good living, and some hoping to make an impact on the clients that they represent.

The different is easy to recognize. A good recruiter is passionate about filling his roles. A great recruiter is obsessed with filling his roles.

Josh Bear is currently vice president at Jivaro, a recruiting firm based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has been involved in headhunting since he co-founded Jivaro as the head of its Client Research Division in 1997. In addition to his day-to-day headhunting responsibilities, he also manages multiple teams of recruiters that focus on high tech placements and handles operations for Jivaro?s regional offices.


6 Comments on “The Earmarks Of A “True Recruiter”

  1. Very insightful. Gives me a different perspective from what I originally had. I have new appreciation for what is expected of recruiters.

  2. Bullseye Josh!!! I preach your definition of “true” recruiter constantly & practice/live it every moment of every day as a Business Development Exec. So very please to hear I’m not alone with my passionate vision of our industry!

  3. Complete nonsense.

    Firstly, recruitment and headhunting are not the same thing. One is a subset of the other.

    Secondly, if a recruiter works on contingency, as most do, what they do for a living isn’t real recruitment. It’s inhouse recruiters that do real recruitment.

    What contingency recruiters do for the most part is spot-trading.

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