Career Advice

The Truth Behind Recruiting & Finding ‘Brand Talent’

Have you ever applied for a job? Been called by a recruiter? Had a friend tell you about an opening she thinks you would be perfect for? Then I want a minute of your time. To tell the truth, I’m a little obsessed with you and it’s not just about your great looks and charming personality. I think you actually hold the key to turning this economy around. We are going to use this weekly blog to find out whether I’m right.

I am going to bring you inside the world of recruiting. It might not sound that interesting, but chances are that you may have your fate in the hands of a recruiter at some point in the future. It’s a good idea for you to get to know about what happens behind the scenes.

To understand recruiting you need to keep two words in mind: “active” and “passive”. When you apply for a job on the web or send in your resume to a company you are immediately labeled as “active”, as in “this person is actively looking for a job.” And when a recruiter comes looking for you then you are considered “passive” as in “not looking for a job at this time, but I think she might be a fit for this position.”

Most recruiting activities are focused on “managing actives” or “finding passives.” Of course it gets a lot more complex than that, which we will discuss in the coming weeks, but for now you just need to know that these labels are applied to you during a job search.

I think there is a third, better way than “active” and “passive”. In fact, the reason I am so obsessed with you and your job seeking experience is that I think the future depends on you becoming what I call “Brand Talent”.

Brand Talent are people who don’t fit into the convenient “passive” and “active” buckets. Brand Talent aren’t looking for work, so they aren’t technically active. But they aren’t sitting around waiting for recruiters to call them either. They are using the power and reach of the Internet to build up an individual brand identity that can easily be found by recruiters. These “Brand Mavens” actually work overtime to ensure that the right jobs come looking for them.

Since you have found your way to this blog you are already using tools like Glassdoor to learn more about how you can take control of your career. You are already on the path to being Brand Talent. Hopefully this blog will help you complete the journey. In the future we will:

  • Learn the new ways that recruiters are searching for talent, and how becoming Brand Talent will help you take advantage of these new recruiting trends.
  • Understand how actively managing your brand and your career will help your performance at work.
  • Develop and define your sense of purpose and use that definition to build a portfolio of work and network of connections that validates the special something you can bring to a job opportunity.
  • Create an “investor profile” that will allow you to think about exactly what you want to get out of a work experience, and develop ways to ensure that recruiters address your “return on investment” criteria in the evaluation process.

    I look forward to hearing your ideas, your concerns and your insights as we develop a roadmap for Brand Talent.