7 Things I Learned From My Days As A Recruiter, Where I Read Hundreds Of Resumes A Day

Working in staffing and recruiting early in my career taught me a lot about people and business.

1. Absorb all the business knowledge you can, no matter your role.

As a recruiter, I needed to clearly communicate job descriptions, requirements, and specifications to candidates. That required working closely with hiring managers to gain comprehensive knowledge of various business processes. Today, the knowledge I gained in that realm serves me well.

2. A hustling mentality will serve you well in any field.

In most staffing and recruiting positions, you’re relying heavily on commissions. So if you don’t place, you don’t eat. In this high-pressure situation, you learn how to hustle — networking, ruthlessly prioritizing, going to dinners and lunches, meeting people after work hours when you have to, anything to get the job done. I’ve carried that hustling mentality with me throughout my career.

3. Genuine relationships are everything.

Beyond matching candidates with job openings, staffing and recruiting is about building relationships. Today, as CEO at Place Technology, the relationships I’ve built are invaluable — especially because many of the people I connected with then are C-suite executives now.

4. Sales experience will serve you well no matter where your career path takes you.

Really, everything in staffing and recruiting is a sales pitch to some extent. Essentially, you’re selling candidates to companies and vice-versa. And you’re selling yourself as someone who can find the right candidate to potential clients.

5. Every professional should be able to illustrate where they’ve been and where they’re going.

In my staffing and recruiting days, I found that the best candidates have personal goals and a well-defined career path — they can effectively tell their professional story.

6. Interviews aren’t just about technical skills.

At my company, we recently hired a new salesperson. Aside from her technical ability, I was impressed by her politeness and thoughtfulness. She thanked me for meeting with her, and when I connected her with our chief technology officer, she moved me to BCC so their back-and-forth wouldn’t clog up my inbox.

7. How to deal with human behavior and emotions.

People are complex and working with them can be difficult.

Working in staffing and recruiting changed the course of my career.

I fell into staffing almost by accident, but the experience ended up having a huge impact on my life. Working as a headhunter is what ended up inspiring me to start my first business, Talent Rover. But even more importantly, it taught me so much about every aspect of business, about how to communicate, and about hustle. Though it was extremely challenging at the time, I wouldn’t trade the experience for the world.

Dog dad, husband, entrepreneur, investor. www.linkedin.com/in/Metcalf

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