Viewpoint: All take and no give

Contribute to your client’s industry to be seen as a partner

As search consultants, we do our best work when we’re allowed to be partners – rather than just service providers – to our clients. We need to know what makes them tick and what their goals are so we can attract the people and personalities that will make them great.

We know this, our team knows this, and you probably know this too. So how do we convince our clients to take this step with us? It’s not enough to show them we’re great. We need to show them we care as well. To do this, we need to bring to life our personality, knowledge and provide a proper contribution to the industry they inhabit.

Show off your knowledge

We spend every day around our brilliant recruitment teams. We absorb nuggets of knowledge, experience and all the inside tips to keep us on top of our client’s industry. But how does the client know this?

By identifying a gap, problem or potential issue in a client’s sector, we can get ahead of the game and be proactive in recommending a solution, showing that we know them as well as they know themselves. If we’re able to think laterally when solving problems in their industry, then we’re able to do the same in bringing the right people to their business. 

People and personality

At RBW, we’ve built a team of people who care about the same things as us. This doesn’t mean we’re all the same (thank goodness!), but it means we’re on a shared mission. The same principle stands for recruiting.

Good relationships are built by two things – people and personality. In our recruitment efforts, we don’t just look at the top line of a CV, but the person instead. How will they fit into the company? Do they have the right attitude? Are they on the same page? We ask these questions of the people we look to place, and clients ask them of us. 

Putting it into practice

From diversity initiatives to fundraising for support groups, contributing to a client’s industry can take a variety of forms. Most importantly a contribution to your client’s industry should be an authentic, genuine, ideally mutual cause that you’re both passionate about. There’s no ‘fake it till you make it’. It needs to mean something to your business.

RBW Consulting is a specialist search consultancy in the life sciences sector. This year, we’re using a percentage of the money earned from our rare disease clients to fund research into the mental health impact of a rare disease diagnosis.

We’re not doing this for commercial benefit, but because, like our clients, we care about improving the lives of those dealing with this situation. It’s something important to us as a team, and it’s personal to a number of members of staff too. We want to be part of the solution.

The possibilities for fostering a partnership are endless. But what is key is a real, authentic commitment to the things a client cares about most.

Danielle Cohen is senior practice specialist at RBW Consulting

Katie Dunbar is senior consultant at RBW Consulting

Image credit | iStock

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