Beating the Recruiter Blahs

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Dog Tired RecruiterAs a recruiter, you get what you put in.  It’s an old cliché, but in our business, it’s time tested and quite true.  That means that you work hard, stay focused and drill into resumes as quickly, efficiently and deeply as possible.

However, there are times when that level of commitment and delivery is just not there.  It may be that the position you’re trying to fill is a purple squirrel.  Perhaps the position is completely fine but the Manager’s expectations are off base.  Or maybe you’re just not feeling ‘it’ today.  Take a deep breath and relax.  We’ve all been there and it will pass on its own, but there are definitely ways to help the doldrums along.

  1. TAKE A BREAK.  I’ll say this again; you get what you put in.  And while that means hard work and dedication are necessary, it also means that if you’re frustrated, burnt out and distracted your results are going to be equally frustrating and off base.  You need a change of scenery.  Grab the car keys, hop in the car and get a cup of coffee.  Blast some of your favorite music in the background.  Take a walk outside and get some fresh air.  There are a thousand options to get you away from your desk, away from the computer and gain you a little perspective.  A change in surroundings is a fantastic way to shake things up (wake your brain up) and reinvigorate yourself.  Once you’ve taken a few minutes to yourself, take a new look at the open position.  You may have a different perspective or some fresh ideas on tracking that candidate down.
  2. STAY POSITIVE.  Our business, (while fun, dynamic and lucrative) is very stressful with a constantly charged environment.  How can it not be when our focus is delivery, delivery, delivery?  We have to find the best candidate faster than anyone else out there.  It’s a competitive, fast-paced business so keeping a positive outlook is absolutely necessary.  We have all been there to see a coworker or competitor falling down that slippery slope of negativity. Statements like “This job is impossible to fill” or “That jobs been open forever” abound. When you hear complaints like that, run as fast as you can in the other direction!  Look at the positives….what do you know about this open job that perhaps they didn’t?  Do you have access to the Manager? Can you talk about the role in further detail? Have you filled roles like this before?  How can you make this open job position into something better than they did?  In the world of recruiting you have to look at each job opening as an opportunity and identify ways that you can capitalize on it.  So check the negativity at the door.  Our business isn’t about yesterday; it’s about the placement today.
  3. BE REALISTIC.  So now that we have talked about the importance of staying fresh, positive and open-minded let’s bring it home: BE REALISTIC.  Like I said, positivity and open-mindedness are invaluable in this business.  That said; once you feel like you’ve put in your best effort and brought all your skills to bear take another look at the open job.  If you’ve covered all your bases, if you’ve put in 115% effort, if you find yourself looking over the same candidates that you’ve already passed on it’s time for a reality check.  If a position is going to be impossible to fill it might not be worth the time or the excessive feelings of ‘blah’ that you’re putting in.  Be a professional and make a decision based on your own gut and skill set.  They’re the best tools you have.

If you’re going to take your career as a recruiter seriously and keep it up for the long term, it’s important to be very mindful of keeping motivated and inspired. Recruiters can’t afford to work half-heartedly – they need to bring 100% to the office every day. Good luck out there!

Read more in Recruiter Motivation

Marie is a writer for covering career advice, recruitment topics, and HR issues. She has an educational background in languages and literature as well as corporate experience in Human Resources.