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  • Writer's pictureSherry

Making Tough Calls as a Recruiter Consultant

Listening to your client means being open to other viewpoints and having the courage to challenge them. It is getting tougher to make these calls with the pressure of serving your client, taking a risk and dealing with the pressure of time and cost.

A recent article by Ram Charan says, "You can't be a wimp, make the tough calls." He was speaking about the CEO and conquering indecision in chaotic changing environments and markets. However, his views pertain to all of us as we aim to help our clients make their selection decisions. CEO's are running fast and it is often difficult to see ahead and think through the consequences of a decision. Should there be a hiring panel and what will their role be in the decision, how will consensus be managed if that is the aim?

Recruiter consultants have the ability to guide the client from reacting to thinking through strategic talent decisions and selection processes that make sense. Our challenge is to not worry about the consequences so much and help our client consider options so that they get the best result. I am totally in support of hiring panels or peer interviews with a very clear discussion of each stakeholder's responsibility and limits.

People decisions are so tricky. It is hard to get these right. Yes, assessments really help and for those doing them we should learn more. However, what happens after the assessment and someone is hired into an executive role and all of a sudden their plan for onboarding or learning as a leader, which is discussed in the interviewing process becomes a distant priority.

Make the tough calls - step up and have the courage to share your observations. Ask provocative questions so that your client has to reflect, think about the "runway ahead" as Ram Charan suggests rather than the rearview mirror of what you did last year or what the competition does.

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