Five types of recruiter: Which one are you?

article image

The ability to adapt as a recruiter is absolutely vital.

This means adopting different personas (or spirit animals) that’ll help you thrive, depending on your situation. No matter where you’re at in your career, you’ve probably used at least one of these approaches; and are likely to use even more as you progress.

To help you be the best recruiter you can be, we’ve outlined five types of recruiter (and how you can learn from them), courtesy of James Reed’s brand new book, The Happy Recruiter: The 7 Ways to Succeed:


The relatable recruiter

AKA: The Dolphin

Characteristics: They thrive in communicating closely with their colleagues to build relationships that foster trust. Much like a dolphin, they’re likeable, communal, and rarely work alone.

Why they’re like a dolphin: A dolphin interacts closely with its pod, and a relatable recruiter does the same with their clients and candidates.

How to master it: Be human, honest, and empathetic. The key to being a relatable recruiter is all about showing you really care, and taking the time and effort to get to know your clients and candidates.

What to avoid: Rushing to fill a role, and adopting a ‘sell, sell, sell’ approach. People buy from people, not robots; so always be yourself.

Why be relatable? Recruitment is a people business – primarily based around speaking to clients and candidates through a variety of mediums. Developing real connections with relative strangers is no easy feat, but it’s exactly what’s needed to match the right people to the right jobs.


The relevant recruiter

AKA: The Anteater

Characteristics: The jack-of-no-trades and the master of one. They know their field inside out, and they’ve built a depth of specialist knowledge within their sector.

Why they’re like an anteater: An anteater has adapted in order to thrive in its surroundings; and a relevant recruiter uses their sector-specific knowledge to thrive in their industry.

How to master it: Become knowledgeable, never stop learning, and use what you know to tailor your approach. You’ll need commitment and a real interest in your field to succeed as a relevant recruiter, so choose something you’re passionate about and stick to it.   

What to avoid: Being afraid to turn some clients down. If their mission doesn’t match yours, how well can you serve them? Trying to please everyone will only risk losing trust.

Why be relevant? The only way you’ll know whether a candidate is right for a client is if you know about the field. By being relevant, you’ll not only carve a positive reputation built on trust, you’ll also be better able to understand and fulfil clients’ needs.


The ready recruiter

AKA: The Spider

Characteristics: They’re prepared for any eventuality, and careful planning allows them to utilise every opportunity that comes their way.

Why they’re like a spider: Similarly to a spider that waits patiently after weaving a web, a ready recruiter’s hard work will always pay off when the time is right.

How to master it: Be organised, consistent, and alert. Then use these attributes to build a solid candidate pipeline – which is one of your key selling points as a ready recruiter. You should also always be scanning the horizon for new opportunities.

What to avoid: Idly waiting for something to happen. Instead, be proactive. Look in the right places. Talk to the right people. And keep communicating with your clients.

Why be ready? Simply put, it makes recruiting easier. Not just for you, but also for your clients and candidates. By systemising your work and planning ahead, you’ll be able to tackle problems with ease, and provide a more efficient service.


The rapid recruiter

AKA: The Hare

Characteristics: Fast is an understatement for these guys. In every aspect of their recruitment.

Why they’re like a hare: As speedy and as nimble as a hare, the rapid recruiter always wins the best candidate or client, often before they’ve even finished their morning coffee.

How to master it: Be energetic, enthusiastic, and able to understand what’s important and ultimately worth your time. You’ll need to be an excellent communicator to be a rapid recruiter, conversing in a way that minimises misunderstandings or unnecessary back-and-forths.

What to avoid: Getting so caught up in winning the race that you forget to think before you speak, or neglecting the all-important planning process. This will only cost you time in the long run.

Why be rapid? Everybody likes punctuality, and it’s especially important in recruitment. Whether it’s your clients who have a vacancy they need to fill fast, a candidate who’s waiting to hear back about a recent interview, or you – who’s speedy recruiting is the key to keeping everyone happy.


The resilient recruiter

AKA: The Tortoise

Characteristics: They’re steadfast and patient. They simply work around anything that gets in their way, and calmly move on.

Why they’re like a tortoise: Sure, they might encounter obstacles along the way, but much like a tortoise, the resilient recruiter has the added advantage of a ready-made protective shell.

How to master it: Be optimistic, act outside of your comfort zone, and remember that whenever people are involved – you’re going to be faced with situations that are impossible to predict. Grit, patience, and determination are what it takes to succeed, no matter what the obstacles.

What to avoid: Pretending you don’t care. Part of being resilient is acknowledging problems and learning from them, not sweeping them under the carpet.   

Why be resilient? Recruitment is an unpredictable business. To succeed, you need to develop a perfect combination of rapidity and patience. By being able to celebrate the ups, learn from the downs, and find reward in greater difficulty, you’ll achieve more in the long run.


Looking for more happiness in your recruitment?

Read more about how the ‘Seven Rs’ can help you become a happy recruiter, and learn about the final two personas by buying James Reed’s best-selling new book, ‘The Happy Recruiter’ today.



Ready to recruit more effectively? Buy James Reed’s new book today.



Hire the talent to transform your business

Reach active candidates by

signing up to post a job today