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Valuable Life Lessons Thanks to Working in Recruitment

I remember my first interview for a recruitment consultant position - I had recently arrived in London and was very much dazzled by the lights and hustle and bustle of Oxford Circus - and my would-be director sold me the dream...

Very much fresh faced and naive I didn’t have a clear understanding of what recruitment really entailed, but the offices were in a great location and the team seemed nice. So off I went - into the deep end. 18 months later I have changed companies, worked with and for some inspiring people and importantly, found some exciting people their dream roles. But most of all, I’ve been challenged and stretched in ways I had never imagined.

As this is my last week in recruitment, I have found myself becoming quite nostalgic about my last 18 months. Here are a number of career lessons that I have learnt during my tenure that I will be able to use for the rest of my working life. I thought I would share a few of these here…

  • Looking for a new role is sometimes a full time job in itself! It can be so disheartening sometimes - sending out endless applications and hearing nothing. But that’s when you need to sit back and take stock. Being calculated and clear in your search really helps people take the guesswork out of what you are looking for. 
  • Cover letters can help and hinder your application. Too long - no chance it’s going to be read through thoroughly when there are hundreds of other applications. Keep it short, sharp and to the point. Try and mirror the wording on the job spec where relevant. 
  • Prepare as much as  you can for the interview! Read through everything to prepare, and when you think you’ve done that, do it all over again. Make sure you know as much about the company as you possibly can. Read through the job spec to anticipate questions they may l ask you. 
  • Remember the interview is just as much you interviewing them as them interviewing you. They wouldn’t have brought you in if they didn’t think you were good enough. Be confident - you’ve got this! 
  • Building a good relationship with a handful of recruiters is wise - but the onus of communication is on both of you! Recruiters speak to hundreds of new people a week - it’s really important to stand out. Phone them from time to time to see how things are going, they will appreciate you keeping in touch too. This game is all about relationship management. 
  • Team morale is so important - you need to contribute to this just as much as you benefit. 

The points I have made are just the job finding basics - there has been so much more that I’ve learnt in this role: time management, stakeholder management, managing expectations, building better relationships and all round people management. 

People say recruitment is a tough business, which it is, but it is a great environment in which to learn and grow in commercial understanding and business management. It’s been great to have been  able to do all these things at a company like Morgan McKinley.

This blog was written by Victoria Smith 

  • Apr 25, 2016
  • Careers , Culture
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