Written by Olivia Russell, Recruiter, JFC Workforce
By nature, I am a methodical person- I like to know the reasons why something is the way it is, how to tackle tasks in a very clear and practical way, any potential roadblocks (and what the response to those would be), and what the end goal is. During my first year here, I can confidently say those things were a huge deterrent to my success. I wouldn’t take action until I was 100% confident in what I was doing and I didn’t know how to ask the right questions in order to understand the “whys”, “hows”, and “whats”. The conversations I was having with both clients and candidates were lacking clarity, depth, and understanding, which lead to continual frustrations and failures. I wanted so badly to be successful and to represent JFC well and I felt that I was continually coming up short.
For me, failing was not an option; I wanted to make a name for myself while continuing to establish JFC as a competitor in this industry. Thankfully, I work with an incredibly supportive team so I was able to access countless trainings, have one-on-one conversations with my mentor, and spend a lot of time with my branch manager and select senior management. Having that access made all the difference- it allowed me to think about things differently and to take a new approach to my conversations, with that came a new approach to asking the right questions. This is an ever-developing skill but I think it’s safe to say there is a direct correlation between asking the right questions and having a higher placement retention. I was able to see a clear shift between simply staffing each position and recruiting/screening the right candidate(s) for each position. I ask better questions during the interview and really try to hear what the candidate is looking for; much the same, I ask more probing questions with clients in order to hear what really matters to them in the candidate(s) they choose.
In my experience, the key to success is to go after each learning experience, whether that’s a training you’ve already sat in on, to ask a senior manager if you can bend their ear over lunch, to have a conversation that intimidates you, to ask the same question a fourth time. Whenever you think you have it all figured out, I promise, you don’t. If you can allow yourself to learn from your failures and disappointments, you will be better for it.
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