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Doing What Sells
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Whether you realize it or not, one of the talents a recruiter needs is the ability to sell. Barbara Ling tells us what it takes to do it, successfully and responsibly.

Are you doing what sells?

Think about it. How do you increase your own bottom line? By securing clients, fulfilling job requisitions and other timely actions, of course. But are you even getting to that starting point of new clients by doing the following things that sell.

One of the components of a great recruiter is the ability to sell. Sell what? Why, confidence, of course - the heart-felt belief that you can not only fulfill clients' needs, but also go above and beyond by being reliable in the future.

Is that coming out in your client presentations? Your candidate presentations? Even more important, can you deliver on what you promise during your sales pitch?

Doing what sells doesn't mean promising the world in hopes the economy destroys the clients' business before you fail at meeting their needs, of course. At the same time, doing what sells shouldn't be preying on clients'/candidates' dreams and swaying them to your services, if you yourself are not sure of your ability to make things happen.

Doing what sells means providing solutions for your clients' needs. For example, don't assume that because you've handled 23 other manufacturing businesses' recruiting needs, you should expect the best results by offering a canned presentation to the 24th cold-prospected client. Instead (and it's astounding how many recruiters forget this), use a first-contact opportunity to listen intently to both your prospective clients' needs and wants. What are the underlying currents that could sink or swim you? Are there any personal touches you can offer, such as up-to-the-minute information on industry happenings that they might not have at their fingertips? Knowledge is power, of course, and if you showcase to your contact that you are a source of that, you're one crucial step ahead of all your competitors.

There are resources where other sales professionals discuss the art of their trade. You will benefit by using them. (See "Sales Professional Resources")

Remember, running face first into a brick wall again and again just because it feels so darned good when you stop is not doing what sells. If you've been trying the same thing again and again with no appreciable results, STOP! Re-evaluate what you're doing, what the variables involved, and how you can do some controlled tweaking to measure improved success. Your career and bank account will thank you for it.

Barbara Ling, nationally-acclaimed Internet recruiting trainer and analyst, author, and President of The Internet Recruiting Edge is one of the leading pioneers of Internet recruiting. She has conducted customized training seminars and motivational classes to diverse groups for the past six years. Barbara can be reached at

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