Are We Recruiters or Counsellors? – Neil Buckley RedChair Recruitment

When I was asked to write this article, I wanted to write about something that I knew would relate to all fellow recruiters within the industry. At some point, we have all experienced some if not all the below…I am going to use the word “symptoms” and I will explain why.

I think you will agree that recruiter’s jobs and daily routines or responsibilities are extremely busy and hectic. It is up to us to as recruiters to manage our day and workload in the most effective and productive way as possible. If like me, a 360° recruiter, you have 20+ open/active jobs (yeah right, and the rest, I hear you say), you must source candidates, interview candidates, follow up with clients, send CVs, create job specs, advertise jobs, not to mention canvassing and building new jobs etc etc, allocating time to each item, there are simply not enough hours in the day unless I sleep over at the office and put into full effect, the night owl deep within, no, this is not an option. I am a dad, I have to spend time with the kids, update my wife on my day and the hundreds of tasks I went through…let alone any gossip I have heard or funny whatsapp messages I received that have taken over my life.

I know what I have listed resonates with a large majority of recruiters out there. We are busy people, it’s that simple, and we have a hell of a lot going on in our lives, inside and outside of work and this brings me to my point begging the question are we recruiters or counsellors?

We deal with clients and candidates alike, but there are a lot of symptoms or variables that we must consider and face daily. This is never going to change, this is the nature of the business, especially in recruitment. I would say in the last month alone I have experienced some absolutely unbelievable excuses, reasoning, rejections, disappointments, interviews and decision making. Now don’t get me wrong, there has of course been some great stuff too and a few placements thrown in, but you get the idea.

Recruiters are similar to counsellors and this is based on the time and effort/energy that goes into managing each client and candidate. Taking into consideration, the symptoms or variables which can be anything from what type of mood they are in when you speak or meet with them, any stress related activity going on inside or outside of their work life, are they willing to relocate for the position…and I mean, are they REALLY willing to relocate, because it says so on your LinkedIn profile, experience, qualifications, do they match the needs and requirements of the job and the client, there are a lot! Our working day does not finish as soon as we leave the office, that would just be too easy. No, we contemplate things, we interview more candidates when we get home whilst we are preparing our microwaveable ready meals or Jamie Oliver’s 15 Minute Meals, spend time with the family (on more than one occasion I have found myself talking to my two year old son who’s only interest is “Paw Patrol” or “Toot Toot Vehicles” and who has a distinct lack of interest in how fantastic a new client or candidate is, that they live in the area of the position, they fit the criteria, are available immediately, interview has been arranged, they are going to get the job, they will help me with hitting my target, I will receive commission and then I can afford that new toy that he so craves….no, no interest whatsoever.

As recruiters we experience a wealth of emotions constantly, we have to be professional, empathetic, sympathetic sometimes, understanding and great listeners, but also smart and these are all familiar traits with…you guessed it…counsellors.

I welcomed the challenge of starting the new medical recruitment division within Red Chair Recruitment and I have many clients and candidates predominantly in Kerry and Cork, but also nationwide throughout Ireland. I recently attended the Time Management seminar organised by the NRF as I wanted to see if there was a way of helping to organise my ridiculously busy daily schedule. I have also been speaking with Psychologists for one of my many roles and I wanted to adopt their approach of organising their day on an hourly basis (the only difference being that I am unable to charge a ridiculous, extortionate amount of money for an hour of my time) and guess what…it actually works!

I know it won’t be suitable for everyone, but I guarantee it will definitely help some of you out there. My diary is now broken down into hourly slots of which I fill frequently with my prioritised tasks and jobs to focus on. Just for good measure, I like to colour-code things, and it can sometimes look like my son ran riot with every colour hi-lighter to make a neon-rainbow…recruiters love to hi-light (count them on your desk, currently I have four).

Now, I think I have rambled on and probably taken enough of your time out of your crazily busy schedule, but I hope this will help you, if not entertain you and you can relay it to your child or partner or whoever else who has no interest later.

Neil Buckley Redchair RecruitmentIf there is anyone that would like to contact me, thank me, vent their frustrations at me, whatever at me, like a counsellor I am a very good listener and my contact details are below, but I won’t do it from a huge, leather, uncomfortable, judgmental couch or send you a jaw dropping invoice…no…I will treat you like a normal person, just from my desk and my  Red Chair.

Yours Thankfully

Neil Buckley
Medical Recruitment Consultant at Red Chair Recruitment

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