There some commonly held myths with regard to working with recruiters. Awareness of these can spare you some frustration and hopefully expedite your search for that new executive position.
Some common myths about recruiters include:
* The candidate that moves forward in the process is the most qualified.
This is OFTEN untrue. It is the one who does the best job of selling him or herself, in conversation and in his or her resume.
* You need to spend a lot of time locating and connecting with recruiters who specialize in your industry or function.
Contacts are generally made in the reverse direction. Recruiters will only respond to your unsolicited inquiry if they have a CURRENT position that they think is right for you.
* All recruiters know what they are doing.
Often recruiters have little or no training at all. Corporate recruiters in particular are viewed in many instances as order takers. Many recruiters absolutely hate recruiting.
* If a recruiter contacts me, I’m halfway there to an interview, and a job offer is nearly in the bag.
Not so. If the call is from a retained recruiter, your chances are better, but if it is a contingency recruiter, many unfortunately get as many resumes as they can and throw them against the wall, hoping that one or more sticks.
* If the recruiter was really a professional, he would get back to me.
Nope. Recruiters are extremely busy, have literally hundreds of contacts, and it is just not realistic that they will update everyone they deal with. It is not a lack of professional courtesy.
You CAN take control and encourage follow-up, though:
* ASK questions about what the process is, what the next steps are, and how long they think it will be until the next step.
* VOLUNTEER to take the onus off of them and initiate the next contact, establishing what they think would be a good time to do that and whether they would prefer the follow-up by email or phone.
* SHOW the recruiter that you are willing to take some responsibility for the process.
No matter how compelling your executive resume may be, how you deal with recruiters and the impression you make on them can make or break your job search.
In an upcoming post, we’ll cover how to get recruiters to share information with you, how to sell yourself in the interview, lies you may be told by recruiters, and what some of their greatest fears are.