June 19, 2018

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Efficiency is for Amateurs

I take great pride in my laser focus and pinpoint accuracy. When it comes to qualifying a search, building a profile or screening a candidate, no one does it better or more efficiently than me.

Most of the time, the meticulous preparation pays off. Armed with a blueprint, it’s usually a straight line between developing a target list, making the calls and filling the job. That is, unless I run out of qualified candidates.

Which is happening more and more. As people hunker down in their comfy jobs, it’s getting harder to attract top talent, however strong the selling points. As a result, my already shallow pool gets fished-out in a hurry.

In my retained practice, however, failure is not an option. Not only am I contractually obligated to fill my clients’ positions, I have no illusions that the grass may be greener somewhere else. So, barring an intervention – the “nuclear option” of loosening the job specs – I have no choice but to soldier on, even if the person I’m looking for is off the grid.

To Infinity and Beyond

Borrowing a phrase from Donald Rumsfeld, it’s the “known unknowns” that generally save the day. In other words, it’s known that if I keep making calls – and keep asking for referrals – I’ll find the unknown people I’m looking for.

My most recent placement was a case in point. Having exhausted the list of candidates meeting my search criteria, I reached out to several “source” candidates. These were people who were way overqualified or somewhat outside my target market, but who I hoped might be able to make a referral or offer a suggestion as to where to look.

One referral led to another and then another; and five or six calls later, I was referred to the person I eventually placed. Although he met the qualifications for the job, I never would have found him, even with the dozens of search term variations I tried.

While I’d much prefer efficiency to an act of faith, I’ll do whatever it takes to get the job done. Given the circumstances, it’s the most professional thing I can do.

Bill Radin

Bill Radin is one of the most popular and highly regarded trainers in the recruiting industry, and has trained many of the largest independent and franchised recruiting organizations, including Management Recruiters, Dunhill, Sanford Rose, Snelling and Fortune Personnel. His speaking engagements include the NAPS national conference, the annual Kennedy Conference, and dozens of state association meetings and network conventions, including Top Echelon and