Getting the call from an executive recruiter can be an exciting moment in your career. Candidates see it as an opportunity for advancement to their dream job, or it can lead to frustration and rejection. Our global executive recruitment organization with a head office in Toronto, has seen many strong candidates flounder over the years because of a lack of experience when dealing with executive recruiters and the process that they will go through together.
Experienced candidates understand that the recruiter works for the employer, not for the candidate. An executive recruitment organization is hired for their skill in finding the best possible candidate for a certain position. In dealing with an executive organization, treat the executive recruiters as an extension of the hiring organization itself.
For candidates, when you’re being recruited, keep these points in mind so that you can work with the executive recruiter in the most productive manner possible:
Study the client, not the recruiter: We sometimes have potential placements come in for an interview brimming with knowledge on our Toronto headquartered global executive recruitment firm. That is good to a point, but remember rule number one: we’re working for a client, and that client is who you’ll be working for. Research the company that the recruiter has been retained on behalf of.
Be honest about your short-comings: Odds are, if an international executive recruiter has called you in, they already have a good idea of your basic experience. Don’t try and hide whatever experience you’re lacking during your interview. Executive recruiters appreciate honesty.
We’ll help you, but only if you let us: While a professional executive recruiter won’t go too far in coaching you in advance of a meeting, he/she will give you some constructive feedback before sending you for your first interview with the client. Take it and use it, don’t let your ego get in the way. Often times, a recruitment firm is retained by an organization through several hires, which means that they develop an intimate understanding of what that client is looking for. When an executive recruitment firm gives you feedback, it’s because they’re trying to help you understand the client’s expectations.
Sell yourself: We’ve saved this one for last because we see it disregarded so often. While candidates need to own up to any short-comings, they also need to understand that when they are speaking to an executive recruiter, they are speaking to the client. Remember, the recruitment organization was hired by the client. If you don’t sell the recruiters on your skills, then you likely won’t even get a chance to meet the client.