Why I Think Being an Executive Recruiter is the Best Job Ever
For the past 15 years, I have worked as a consultant and executive recruiter. These two roles often go hand-in-hand: When a client needs to evaluate her organization, she may need to make changes. When these changes involve sourcing for hard-to-find and recruited talent, I work to help clients find the people they need.
1. I can do it from any location.
With wireless devices and computers, and video conferencing (with anyone, almost anywhere, usually at no cost), I can identify the people I need to speak to without spending a fortune to visit them (although airplanes are still very much a part of the equation).
2. I have freedom to work anywhere, in any time zone.
From my home or office, I can work with clients in real time in Australia or Asia. Even if it means losing some sleep, I can schedule wake-up calls that make sure I call the people I'm supposed to, when I'm supposed to, using technology.
3. There are always clients somewhere in the world who need (and pay for) help.
Yes, it's true, this is a global recession, but there are some industries that are booming. Certain kinds of engineers, information technology firms, health care and biotech concerns are growing. They need the services I and my colleagues provide, and they pay well for them.
4. I get to meet people all over the world; learning about their cultures is an added benefit.
Even though I would like to visit every country in the world (really!), I will probably never visit all of them. Speaking with engineers on location in Northern Africa as they build a massive new energy station is exciting. I learn firsthand about holidays, customs and even foods people eat in these places. I even learn a few words of the language sometimes! It's also completely delightful to exchange small gifts with people in different places, to give them a taste of America as they send me special cookies made only in Kyoto (as an example). It is also true that I could probably run my own matchmaking service by now, because people tend to open up -- a lot!
5. I work when I want to.
It's true that I work hard, but if I need a Friday off, there is no reason I can't have the day. At the same time, since I am responsible for my earnings, planning for time off is important.
I recommend this career to anyone who is well-organized and comfortable speaking with people in all different walks of life. If you are comfortable speaking with an organization's leaders and senior executives as well as their support staff, and if you sincerely enjoy serving others, this is a great job for you. Becoming established in this profession requires the ability to network to others you know as well as those you don't. You mustn't fear rejection, because it is truly a numbers game. That is, if you call 50 people today to offer your service, you may be rejected by 49. On the 50th call, though, you've just coincidentally connected with someone who needs exactly what you know how to do for them.
If you're willing to learn about employment law, global mobility and social customs, you will do very well. These days, it is smart to obtain certification in the industry so your services are distinguished.