Is your work set-up holding you back?

Why it’s time for a rethink - Tara LescottIt can be hard to assess your true value as a recruiter. This ‘value’ is not just about salary and commission, but about the experience at work that you should be achieving. However, sadly, there is no easily identifiable and reliable source of information that will tell you what ‘good’, ‘great’ and ‘exceptional’ look like in terms of environment, management style, training, earnings and progression.

How do you know if you are achieving the best experience? Are you positioned to maximise your opportunities?

To help you self-assess, over the next two issues is a simple checklist that should offer you some insight. Find out next month what your responses mean for you and your career.

Do you know your promotion criteria?

Are you confident that, if you hit exactly this target and you achieve these specific goals, that your promotion will happen? What will that promotion mean to you in terms of financial rewards, responsibility and job title? Your promotion criteria should be SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, timely.

Yes or no?
If it’s not abundantly clear what you need to do to get promoted, or if there are any vague, subjective and unquantifiable clauses, you need to ask yourself why that might be. Firms that are dedicated to your progress will have no problem being transparent on this – they should want you to succeed. If your boss resists offering you a firm and agreed guideline, then you are not in control of your career.

Are the goalposts clear and unchanging?

Following on from before, do the goalposts ever move at your company? Does your target change, or do others’ targets change?

Yes or No?
Why do you think this might be?
It’s impossible to achieve your ultimate performance and get those promotions if the goalposts keep moving. There are many reasons for this problem. Whatever the reason, it leads to an unstable foundation on which to build trust with your employer, making it impossible to be in control of your progress.

Do you have access to useful training and coaching?
There’s a big difference between training and coaching.

Training is typically more classroom-based, formal learning for your career, mainly centred on topics such as recruitment skills – clients, candidates, business development, and so on. But what about coaching and mentoring? What happens beyond your basic training?

To achieve your best career, you need to be constantly stretching, learning and embracing ideas. You should be being coached at all times for your next role – whatever that may be. Do you have a coaching plan?

Yes or No?
If not, how will you develop in the longer term?

Can you see evidence of growth – both for the company and for individuals?
In your time with the company, have you seen promotions and an increase in headcount? Do you know which areas of the business the management is focusing on? Do you understand the forward plan for the team, division, and company?

Yes or No?
And if no, why is that? Do you work for a boss who is just getting by? Will that lead you where you want to go? Or are they failing to share that vision with you? Unless you know the plan and feel excited to be a part of it, you are in a job – not a career that fills you with passion and purpose.
See part 2 for the conclusions to assessing your role as a recruiter 

Tara Lescott is managing director of recruitment-to-recruitment agency Recruiter Republic

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