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Why Won’t the Recruiter Meet With Me? Really, You Don’t.

Have you been rejected by a recruiter in your request to meet? Actually, they did you a favor.

Want to get rid of the frustration of being rebuffed in your request to meet? 

Who doesn’t?

Having had loads of my requests to recruiters to meet having been rejected, I discovered it was all in the approach. 
Between my transition and running a job transition group since April 2007, I have met approximately 140 recruiters which helped me understand their business. More importantly, I could see that almost every candidate was inflicting frustration on both sides of the table.
Here’s how to ‘think’ about recruiters. This will benefit both the recruiter (time saver) and yourself (proper expectations of whether a meeting will occur). 
First, recruiters get work by networking into new clients and keeping in touch with existing ones.   A call to a client is an “At Bat”.   They get paid by finding the candidate that fits the specific requirements laid out by the client.
Second, a meeting with a candidate for which there is not an active search is the recruiter taking practice swings (It’s unlikely the recruiter will get any of the leads you are pursuing).
Therefore, you want recruiters filling the orders in hand, so they can find new jobs to fill, not chatting with you.  The more jobs they find, they more likely they will have one that fits you. 
Worry less about getting a meeting and more about including the words or phrases in your resume that pertain to the position you seek and are highly likely to be used in a keyword search in the recruiter’s database. No matter if you’ve met a recruiter, their first stop on every search is their database when starting to build a pool of candidates – you WANT to be in that pool.
There’s no harm in offering to meet to network when contacting a recruiter (with your resume).  Many recruiters have some Rock Star networks, so they could make good connections. Just start with the expectation that no recruiter will accept your offer, because most will not, simply because most already have enough practice swings. This expectation is the best way to avoid frustration.
Those recruiters who do accept are interested do so because they see value in networking with you. Be certain to get prepared and figure out how you can help them – which will usually be given in return. 
If they do not accept the offer, then you’ve lost nothing except the 15 seconds to type the offer in your e-mail.
Trust me; if you match up with what their client is seeking, you will spend a fair amount of quality time with the recruiter. Until then, let the recruiter go to work.
Good luck today!
Mark Richards


Topic Expert
Cindy Kraft
Title: CFO Coach
Company: Executive Essentials
(CFO Coach, Executive Essentials) |

Good post, Mark. My two cents ...

It's important to remember that recruiters are not in the business of finding candidates jobs, they are in the business of filling open positions. They are paid by their client (the company) not the job seeker (you), so they are working for the company not the job seeker. It's an important distinction to remember to avoid being frustrated when recruiters won't talk to you.

Which brings me to the second cent of my two cents ...

Build recruiter relationships BEFORE you have the need for recruiters. If you are positioned as an attractive passive candidate vs. a desperate job seeker, there's a lot more incentive for the recruiter to respond to your inquiry.

Sara Voight
Title: Controller
Company: Critical Signal Technologies, Inc
(Controller, Critical Signal Technologies, Inc) |

I understand that recruiters do not work for me and my 'job' is to be an attractive candidate for positions they are looking to fill. My frustration has come when I am contacted by a recruiter for a specific position and they don't have any interest in even a short meeting with me.

I had this happen to me two months ago when I was contacted for a very attractive and challenging position. The recruiter reached out to me via LinkedIn and we exchanged the position details and my formal resume. He wanted to get my resume to the company right away as we both felt the position was a perfect fit(I knew the company and position and agreed to let him forward my credentials). He had also been their sole external recruiter for almost ten years. At the time I recommended we meet briefly so he could become better acquainted with me as a person and not just a voice or piece of paper. I suggested a cup of coffee. While he continued to reach out to me with questions about my experience and interest, he would never commit to actually meeting me.

The position was filled internally and I understand that he does not owe me anything with this opportunity or even for future positions. I just found it lacking in class to not want to meet with someone he felt was a good fit for a position that could have brought him a healthy commission. Our current offices are less than three miles apart and we both network in some of the same groups.

Tom Ruchalski
Title: CFO
Company: Skyline Windows
(CFO, Skyline Windows) |

Make a great first impression when you meet with a recruiter. I found a lot of success with a boiler plate power point to accompany my resume. The PP stressed how I would provide value to a prospective employer.

Olga Collins
Title: Liquidity Director
Company: Capital One
(Liquidity Director, Capital One) |

This is a great idea! Any way you can share your template?

Tom Ruchalski
Title: CFO
Company: Skyline Windows
(CFO, Skyline Windows) |

Send me your contact info and I will send the pp

Topic Expert
Mark Richards
Title: VP of Finance & Operations
Company: RBA Consulting
(VP of Finance & Operations, RBA Consulting) |

Tom - You can post your powerpoint as a Resource on Proformative. Mark