KSearch was off to a good start this year! On January 2, Ms. Karmeli Kintanar, who is now the VP for Business Services, conducted a Knowledge Enrichment Program (KEP) that emphasizes the basic winning practices which she asserts should propel KSearch to reach its goal for this year. She started the discussion with a strong motivational message – “Anyone can claim to be a headhunter, but not everyone can be a consultant. What sets us consultants apart from headhunters is the high-quality service we provide to our clients.”
It is only fitting that the first KEP of the year should deal with the basics, the “nitty gritty” of what makes a good, professional search. After all, there is no better way to start the year than with a reminder of the company’s best practices and established processes. The objective of this session was to instill in employees the right habits that could further build their consulting knowledge and expertise that are both essential in providing outstanding services to their clients.
Ms. Karmeli drilled down the basic steps a recruiter should take to become a great consultant. According to her, in order to be deemed a consultant, the person must constantly train himself to prepare for meetings. This means that he should, prior to his meeting, research on his client’s profile – its history, nature of business, organizational structure and performance over the years. It is only through research that one gets to formulate the right questions. Before the meeting, it is wise to construct burning questions for the client. This will not only create a good first impression on the client but will enable the consultant to extract relevant information as well. Details such as attrition, nature of business, company matrix, performance, short- and long-term plans, and career opportunities are important talking points and would not fail to make a good impression on the potential/ongoing client.
After researching on the client’s background, the next step is to understand the client’s executive search requirements – the technical skills and behavioural aspects they require for the job, the reporting matrix, and the responsibilities, challenges and expected deliverables for the person that will be assuming the role. Peripheral pieces of information about the current job needing to be filled are valuable as these could entice candidates to apply for the job.
Ultimately, in every client engagement, it is important to capture the data that has been shared. A consultant should use a mnemonic device that can help him retain all of the information. It could be in the form of a flow chart or an abbreviation style. Any system may be used! What should be remembered is that the consultant should make use of a system that is most beneficial for him to record valuable and relevant information.
The same process is followed by consultants when interviewing a candidate. A consultant first reviews the candidate’s profile. To understand the candidate better, a consultant asks questions that are relevant to the position the candidate is being considered for. During the interview, a consultant also resorts to the best system that helps him retain all the important pieces of information about the applicant. These data will enable him to generate a good endorsement report to be sent to the client.
These are the building blocks of a great consultant. According to Ms. Karmeli, the quality of the report can only come from having good notes taken during interviews/meetings. In addition, the quality of the notes can only come from very good questions.
It is important to follow these practices to be able to build one’s knowledge and expertise as a consultant and to develop his professional relationship with his clients and candidates. After all, the quality of a consultant’s relationship with his professional network is determined by the behaviour he exhibits, wealth of knowledge he shares and professionalism he exudes.
By : Evie Galera, IT Practice Area