Here at MA, we know that a recruiter’s development needs to go way beyond the classroom. Junior recruiters require sales and relationship management skills and our classroom-based content more than covers this. Senior recruiters require market expertise, something no amount of classroom-based training can truly provide. For our seasoned recruiters to gain this market expertise, we immerse them in their markets. For many of them this means attending trade fairs and exhibitions such as Big Data Paris and Salesforce Tour London, where they can meet with Industry experts, candidates and clients in the field, attend seminars on their core product and hear about innovations in their market alongside end users. It gives them detailed, cutting edge knowledge of their areas of expertise as well as the chance to forge relationships beyond the sales cycle. For us, this development forms an important part of our responsibility of our people, it’s part of our commitment to ongoing investment in them.
Let’s break it down: Why is it important for you (the recruiter) to attend events?
Grow your talent pool
An opportunity to grow your talent pool and leave an impression on people you don’t know yet and reinforce impressions of those in your network.
Understand your industry
Better understanding of the hiring landscape within your chosen field. i.e. Who your competitors are, who is hiring, who is growing, what projects are they planning, what technologies are they adopting etc.
Build lasting relationships
A chance to build relationships. Humans want to connect - it goes without saying that society has moved toward the digital age at light speed over the last decade. However, people (candidates/ clients) still want to see who they are working with. A smile, a laugh even a frown will unveil your human side, making you more than the assumed “money grabbing, non-listening salesperson”
Earn trust by credibility
Learning and credibility building. Joining a conference in your field provides you with a greater knowledge of your clients (current and future), industry activity, culture, and goals. Learn the language of your prospects and clients. You want to know about those new technologies and emerging job titles when your clients mention them – you can even be the one to bring it up in the conversation, demonstrating credibility and up-to-date knowledge.
Reach the ‘hard-to-reach’
Lowering defences. By the end of a busy day most people at an event will have their guard down, With drinks flowing and in conversation with like-minded people, your clients and candidates will open up. The hard part is not to ‘hard sell’. Leave the interrogation for another time and remember – building relationships requires you to give information about yourself as well as ask it of your prospects.
Build your personal brand
Enhancing your personal brand by being the person at the heart of industry events, sharing insights, and being open to learning. Demonstrate your expertise and look for opportunities to enhance your knowledge. Demonstrate the things you want to be known for.
Look for opportunities to try new things
Generate ideas & learn new ways of working: networking, presenting, doing business. Look for opportunities to adopt new methods by observing the people around you. How does that client introduce their business? How does that candidate explain their specialism? When you go through the same routine every day, it’s normal to get comfortable with doing your job in a particular way. An event provides a great opportunity to step away from the day-to-day monotony of work and experience something fresh and exciting. Get inspired and see if you can approach your work in a different way.
Don’t be afraid to network for its own sake
Connecting with other people in the field – including the vendors, presenters, and producers – can lead to unexpected places. The outcomes are not always direct, you can get referred by someone that liked your personality and approach. It can be fun, no trivial thing when you consider that fun is an important factor in any business relationship, because people want to work with people they like.
Give to get
Last but not least, remember that everyone wants to leave the event with more than they came with: more sales, more skills, and the most valuable thing you can take home: new contacts and colleagues, even friendships. You have many ways to get the most out of your attendance and help others make the most out of theirs.