Why Recruitment is like 50 Shades of Grey

C’mon cut me some slack… you knew it and I knew it… it was only a matter of time before the comparisons were made – and if I didn’t write it, someone else would have…

So why is Recruitment like 50 Shades of Grey?  What is it about our industry that can so easily be aligned with the literary genius of E. L. James? Well – without further ado, here are 5 solid reasons why Recruitment is inexplicitly linked to the story of our generation

1.       Christian Grey, you know, the broody millionaire with the S&M and B&D addiction is a great solutions seller.  That’s right, he probed Ana until he found a solution to take her pain away… the fact that he caused the lion’s share of her pain…physically anyway… is beside the point.  OK people, look past the weak double entendres and thinly veiled connotations…  Seriously, how well do you know your clients – and candidates – for that matter?  I’m not suggesting for a moment that you get that close to them, but do you know what keeps your hiring managers awake at night? Do you know what motivates your candidates?  If not, find out… As recruiters we need to raise the bar if we want our clients, and candidates to value the service we provide.

2.       Speaking of service… according to buzzfeed.com the reason women love 50 Shades of Grey is because ‘…it’s about being served…’ So, I pose the question – How well do you serve your clients and candidates? Again… not in that way… but think about it.  We are in a service industry.  Some clients may hire you on price, but they will keep you on service.  Candidates will come back to you based on service.  Your network and referral flow will be driven by your level of service…

3.       Here’s a nice clean one… Recruitment is an industry that is simply not Black & White We have to be on our game 24/7.  It’s a roller coaster of different people, pulling you in different directions, with different perceptions.  There is no secret formula that explains all, and there are definitely 50 Shades of Grey on the journey from sourcing to placement.  On a side note… I wonder if archaeologists dig up copies of 50 Shades of Grey in 400 years time, will we be forced to read them in school like Dickens, and Shakespeare?… Probably not…

4.       50 Shades of Grey is about learning new things, and looking for better ways to do things… for Ana anyway… And if we know anything about recruitment it’s that it is forever evolving.  Just in the last couple of years we have gone from newspapers to job boards, to social media, to mobile.  We have evolved form phones to skype.  We are able to better track work history, assess candidates more thoroughly, and gather more public domain information about our clients and competitors – in short we are also learning about new things… Sure they may not involve floggers or blind folds, but hey… at the rate our industry is evolving don’t count anything out…

5.       Finally, 50 Shades of Grey will come as a bolt of recognition and understanding for all PSL or PSA Recruiters… just like Ana your arrangement with your client involves signing a contract and spending most of your relationship tied down by it…

*Public Disclaimer – I have never read 50 Shades of Grey, or the subsequent sequels… (Not saying that I won’t in the future).  All of my research into this post has been provided by my good friends at Google…. oh….and… my darling wife… who thoroughly enjoyed all 3 books in the series…

Craig Watson

5 thoughts on “Why Recruitment is like 50 Shades of Grey”

  1. Enjoyed your comments Craig!
    I have to say am currently having interesting experiences with recruitment agencies as a newby to Perth job-seeker, so I will from now one liken it all to the three well read books in bookcase!
    At least I will be smiling….
    Rita 🙂

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