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Lost your passion? Consider moving from communications to headhunting

Love your industry, but lost the passion for your work? Perhaps it's time to do something different.

I hear time and time again people talking about changing their careers for something new, but they hesitate out of a fear of starting from the bottom, both financially and responsibility-wise. If that is the case for you, then perhaps it’s worth considering a career in headhunting. If you have developed great contacts, market knowledge, and you have experience in a service-oriented business, then the shift might be more natural than you think. 

Hanson Search specialises in the marketing and communication sectors. There is a lot of synergy, skills are easily transferable and if you are headhunting in the same market that you have worked in, you have a ready-made contact base to tap into. With the right training and environment, you may find yourself moving quickly up the career ladder. If you’re considering changing course and wondering ‘Is headhunting for me?’ then here are a few things that you should know.

Big Rewards

The rewards available to good headhunters are almost unlimited. It can offer a financially lucrative career path; if successful, at least 50% more than what you would expect as an equivalent to an AD. Depending on your company, market and role, you may have great travel opportunities when working on international briefs or opening offices abroad.

Work-Life Balance

For people seeking a better work-life balance, headhunting can be easy to manage alongside family life. Work can be prioritised and you certainly shouldn’t experience the late nights that you find in a comms or PR agency. To a degree, it comes down to the culture and values of the company you work for. It's important to find the right company that will be a good cultural fit for you.

Personality is Key

Having outstanding communications and interpersonal skills are crucial. You are helping people develop their careers – one of the most important things in most people’s lives. Therefore, you must be able to listen, build trust and communicate clearly in a supportive way. You are essentially someone’s advisor, counsellor and best friend all rolled into one.

People buy from people, as they say. A friendly, engaging and consultative approach is very important when speaking with clients. You need to reflect the industry and relate to the clients with whom they are speaking.

Embrace that Enquiring Mind

Good headhunters are often organised, culturally-aware, creative and curious about people and the world. That curiosity is a key character trait. You need to be able to ask the right questions and finding out about people and businesses will help in the process. It is a bit like matchmaking. You need to really get under the skin of the role and the organisation and then think creatively about problems and work out strategies to find the right type of person for it. Once you have fully understood that whole picture, then you can start to seek the perfect candidate. That level of curiously helps lead to greater understanding, and you will then become the ‘go-to’ person for MDs and CEOs wanting to grow their businesses.

Show Empathy

As a headhunter, you are making fundamental changes to people's lives. If you put them in the wrong job, it can have a major impact. Whereas the right one can be career - or even life - changing. Good headhunters understand the importance of their work and the impact it has on their clients and candidates. Being empathetic will mean you're able to make lasting, successful placements, thereby securing long-term business relationships.

Industry Expertise is Golden

Knowledge of the sector and roles in which you are looking to recruit is essential. Here at Hanson Search, we like to take on consultants with firsthand experience working in our markets. Some of our most successful consultants came to us with several years of experience gained from working in an advertising or PR agency.

Watch the video: Working at Hanson Search

If you’ve worked in communications and have a good reputation and a strong network of contacts, a move into communications recruitment could be a perfect next step for you. A good headhunting business should be able to train and develop you and help you make a smooth transition.

Talent Will Take You Far

Talent is the primary concern of businesses today across industries and markets. If you are good, you will become a respected and valued partner working with clients at a senior level – be that CEOs, MDs or Directors of Communications. It can be a tough job; it’s not just about coffees and lunches like some people think! But with the right combination of expertise, personality, training and support, those big rewards will open up to you. It's time to get your mojo back. 

Headhunting at Hanson Search

If you’re looking for rewarding work, recruiting and headhunting across communications and marketing industries, join us. We offer a robust training and development programme for talented, passionate individuals, giving you the opportunity to work with an impressive list of clients internationally from our offices in London, Paris and Dubai. We are currently hiring in London and Dubai.

Don't hesitate to get in touch if you'd like to have a confidential chat about your career.

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Author: Alice Weightman

As Founder and CEO, Alice established Hanson Search in 2002 and has since gained a reputation as one of the leading search professionals in senior appointments across communications, developing an incredible network globally.

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