At times, it may seem strange that a recruiter won’t tell you the name of the hiring company upfront.
Today I’ll reveal why we do that, and how it benefits you.
You won’t tell me the company you’re recruiting for before we speak. Why?
You all know the drill: A recruiter reaches out to you via email or InMail with an “opportunity” and the first thing you ask yourself is “What is the company?” Perhaps you are frustrated when you send a reply and that recruiter still won’t reveal the company; ever wonder why? There are many reasons (indulge me for a minute).
First of all, the search may very well be confidential. That’s the case with 80% of our searches; for various reasons including an under-performer in the role, unannounced organizational changes, an expansion, etc. We are obligated to establish initial interest, and sometimes even an NDA, before revealing sensitive information.
But beyond that, as a recruiting firm that values relationships and identifying appropriate fits between our candidates and clients, it’s critical that we don’t reduce our interaction to a “transaction.” We don’t believe that something as important as a career decision and culture fit should be reduced to a “swipe left/swipe right” sort of transaction based on surface facts. If we simply said “We are looking for a Regional Director for (Brand X),” you are going to make your decision on whether to engage based on what you believe you know about that company or the position, right or wrong.
When we reach out to you as a candidate for a particular role, it’s due to a belief that this could be a good opportunity for you based on your profile compared to job specifications. But we don’t know until we engage with you and understand your criteria for making a change and dig into a few things to see if there is a skill and culture fit. If it’s a potential match, great! We’ll explore it together. If not, we now know some added information about you that might prompt another outreach in the future or, as it often happens, we realize in that moment that we should discuss another position we are looking to fill right now that’s a better match for you.
What if we revealed the company upfront, in that email, and you simply thought “No, that brand doesn’t appeal to me?” Perhaps you don’t know that it is shifting its leadership, expanding, adding a product line, or other changes that often trigger our searches and might likewise shift your perspective on the company and opportunity. If you make the initial decision to decline speaking with us solely based on your knowledge of the brand and the company, you would never hear these updates from us that allow you to make an informed decision on whether to proceed.
My firm works very hard to reach out in a targeted way, properly engage with you as the candidate, and learn about your skills and career desires to only present you for opportunities that make sense. Keep an open mind and indulge a 10-minute conversation if you are approached to better know about opportunities in your market. Isn’t your career worth that small investment?
If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or shoot me an email. I’ll talk to you again soon!
Rob Bowerman is President and Founder of The Bowerman Group- a leading executive search firm for luxury brands in the U.S. and Canada. Rob is also President of The Pinnacle Society, the premier consortium of industry-leading recruiters in North America.