Career success

How to Work With Executive Recruiters

Two common types of recruiters: retained and contingency. Retained firms usually work only on senior-level assignments. Contingency recruiters usually fill middle- to lower-level posts. They differ on how they are paid, but both types receive a percentage of a selected candidate’s annual starting pay as their fee. You don't need to pay any one of them.


When a recruiter calls, first find out more about the firm- name of search firm, website etc. Check. Make sure it isn't just someone from your firm who’s posing as a recruiter to see whether you’re looking to jump ship.


When a recruiter calls, once you have verified their antecedents, start with giving the recruiter what they want, namely information, even if you both don't work it out initially.


Consider every recruiter who gets in touch as a networking opportunity. Even if are not a match, help the recruiter if you know someone who fits the bill. If you are feeling more chummy that day, you can even share a list of companies you consider a strong fit for the job. Maybe you will be on their radar for future openings.


Don’t exaggerate your credentials or accomplishments. They will cross check.


Take things forward only if you’re serious about wanting to change jobs.


Let recruiters know your preferences beforehand. Let them what are off limits or non -negotiable- for example, tell them you won't work in ethically compromised companies on principle.


Have a list of references (previous colleagues, bosses etc) ready at your side at all times.


Let the recruiter know you’re job-search savvy. Ask about the employer, its size, its culture, and most importantly all the skills needed for the position. Ask about the number of vacancies and number of people they have contacted. Ask them to email you a detailed list of job specifications and responsibilities. Come off as a competent person and they will respect you.


Let recruiters know why you think you are 'not a good fit' (sounds better than 'not interested') for the job.


If the recruiter doesn't tell who the employer is, be equally discreet in return. Ask for more information so you can evaluate the opportunity, before you send them your resume.


Thank you for reading.
This guide is from The Success Manual, which contains 200+ guides to succeeding in business, career and personal life.  Get the pdf ebook for $12 only.