Hook, line and sinker – netting the perfect candidate...
I read an interesting analogy recently that suggested recruiting is rather like fishing. No need to drag me off to an institution just yet, I promise I haven’t gone stark raving mad and, yes, I was sceptical about the similarities at first too, but bear with me...
When you think of fishing, you may well envision a lovely, small boat, the sun shining down and a peaceful trip, which, if you’re lucky, might just result in a tasty supper. What you may have forgotten is the huge amount of preparation that has gone into planning this trip. How much of it really is luck? There really are all kinds of things you need to consider if you want to bring home the bacon (or should that be salmon, trout or cod?!). What kind of fish do you want to catch? Where’s the best spot to find those fish? Different fish need different bait and a variety of different methods to get them to bite. You really need to make your rig (that’s fishing speak for ‘set up’) as attractive as possible in order to hook that perfect specimen which will be the envy of all your friends for years to come. No one wants to that person talking about ‘the one that got away’.
Ah, you’re catching on now aren’t you?
So you see, fishing really is like recruiting. It’s about having the knowledge, know-how and patience to find out exactly what an employer is looking for in a new employee (what type of fish), then setting about researching where you might find people with the exacting criteria (picking your perfect fishing spot) and then doing everything in your power to make the new job as attractive as possible and place that perfect person (choosing the perfect bait and rig).
Many people fish for a hobby – but it takes years of experience to become a great fisherman. You need to know all the best places to fish and you’ll often find that great fishermen have an equally good group of friends who will often have new ideas on where the fish might now be living – they might even know if they’re likely to be moving on anytime soon.
I don’t think I am offering anything revolutionary or secretive here, but as an MD (a golfer perhaps?) or HR professional (a coach of a local team?), you may simply not have the time or knowledge to ‘fish’ as effectively as you’d like to – it’s just not your ‘hobby’. Your jobs are complex and varied and your ‘to do’ list is probably growing even as you read this. Choose a great headhunter and you’re increasing your odds dramatically of finding that perfect catch. You’re investing in years of experience and a network that is far ranging across many disciplines and industries. You have most definitely heard the term “There are plenty of fish in the sea”, well, it’s not exactly the same for talent – there isn’t as much of it swimming around as we would all like to think. But, it’s about knowing where that talent is; it’s about anticipating where you’ll net the best candidate for your growing pond.
Want Ellis Fox to go fishing for you? Then get on the line! 020 7183 0255