Okay – I know, as soon as you hear another recruiter on your voicemail, you’re hitting the delete button before the message plays through. But wait, that call might not be a sales pitch to you, but for you. After all, the economy is shifting; there’s a steady stream of opportunities out there and it my just might make sense to start listening to how the coming wave may affect you.
Not looking you say, happy in your current role? Well aren’t you the least bit curious about who is hiring, what they’re offering or if you’re a good fit? And why not?
When opportunity knocks, it’s always a good idea to listen, especially if it’s with a recruiter you trust or whose pitch is credible. I have many a ‘happy’ client who appreciate being kept in the loop surrounding current events in the job market. After all, you never know when a corporate event will leave you in a position to make a change.
And some recruiters, like myself, get the really good jobs no one else does. So selective listening could be a good thing. You engage with an industry insider who is on the cutting edge of industry growth. You can get a real-time gauge of compensation at your level. And by the simple courtesy of listening and engaging, you partner with a recruiter who remembers your kindness and includes you in their stable of selective candidates in the loop. Besides, it’s good career planning to pro actively have relationships with headhunters who work in your space.
Now I’m not saying you should fall over backwards for every call, email or Linked In request. Be selective. The good recruiters are and those quality relationships can really pay off – for both sides. What to look for? Experience, credibility, exclusivity and professionalism. Does the recruiter really have a valid assignment or are they fishing? Are they retained or contingency? Exclusive or just one of many recruiting in the same pool for the same job?
How much experience do they have? Do they know their market space and importantly, are they known and respected in their industry? And if so, do you trust them? Do they practice discretion? After all, they may potentially represent you in a big life decision. Your relationship with a recruiter is a very personal one and should be based on mutual respect and trust and that holds true whether they are your client or you are theirs.
And if that opportunity isn’t a fit for you, you might just have a colleague who might be interested and ready for a change whether you realize it or not. Referrals are like gold to a recruiter. We cherish them and those they came from. Recruiters are like elephants; we have long memories and long lives! Referrals are a feel good that can pay off in spades down the road.
So before you hit that delete button, take a moment and listen just a little longer. You may just find yourself interested after all.