It can be easy in life to sometimes think that the grass is greener on the other side. This can be anything from where you live, what role you are in, the technology available…the list can be endless. It is human nature for our minds to wonder and think of what things can be like on the other side of the fence. Yes, there are times that things actually are better elsewhere, however for the most part after having a look, what we often find is that is not often the case. In my time in Recruitment I have spoken to a number of Recruiters locally in ANZ who think that the Recruitment Function overseas is far more advanced than it is actually may be. Many times I have spoken to Recruiters in ANZ who think that we as an industry locally are a few years behind in the way recruitment takes place in comparison to other locations like North America or EMEA.
For the most part I disagree with statements like these, a good Recruiter will be successful regardless of the location they work.
I can however appreciate that local cultural differences can play a part. I think this line of thinking comes from the fact that many of the tools we now use tend to come from ‘hotspots’ like US West Coast or UK, etc…. Before social networking was all the rage many social networks were being created and used by early adopters in the US. For example (and this is a generalisation), I do think that the uptake of social networking tools occurs faster and is more engrained in the US than in comparison to Australia. In the US from what I have seen people are generally more open to sharing their information on public forums than people are locally in Australia. I think in Australia people tend to be more reserved when sending their resumes to companies or more cautious about setting up public profiles. I remember when I first set up my LinkedIn account about 4 years ago. In 2006, LinkedIn provided me with a competitive advantage as many Recruiters locally were not using LinkedIn at all. It was being used by many Recruiters in the US but not in Australia. I think this is because LinkedIn’s early adopters were predominantly based in the US. As the social network has expanded over the past 3-4 years it has become used more in other countries. Fast forward to 2009 and every Recruiter globally has a profile on LinkedIn (as a side note – I fear LinkedIn is going to become overrun with Recruiters and many candidates may lose interest in it as a tool, due to all the white noise).
I think that there are good and bad Recruiters everywhere – location does not make a person successful. As I have blogged about previously I do believe that in Recruitment that Customer Service is King. We may do things differently across the globe but one universal rule that I think applies regardless of location is that if you can not treat your clients and candidates with a superior level of customer service, you will always come in second place. I could put together a number of quotes of what makes a Recruiter successful, but like anything in life you only get out of something what you put in. You can not be successful if you are afraid to pick up the phone and make your cold calls or if you think that candidates will magically fall into your lap – it does not matter where you are or what tools you have available, hard work and determination are what counts.