The Blueprint Of A Successful Recruiting Process

It takes two to tango in the recruiting process. Here's what you should know.

Last night as I was reading one of my books, I came across an interesting quote from Tom Landry who was a famous and historic coach of the Dallas Cowboys.  While reading this quote, I cannot help but be struck by the similarity between a good coach and a good executive recruiter. Thinking over the past year of the successes and failures that we had with our candidates, there was one thing that pervaded all transactions.  This one thing is the answer to the following question:  Was the candidate coachable? If I was fortunate enough to work with a candidate, client or both that was coachable, the result was extraordinary throughout the recruiting process. In the case where the candidate or the client did not want to be coached, the results (although somewhat satisfactory) were not off the charts.

Qualities Of A Good Recruiter & Recruiting Process

I want to discuss the similarities between a good coach and a good recruiter. The following is the quote mentioned above by the legendary Tom Landry:

“A coach is someone who tells you what you don’t want to hear, who has you see what you don’t want to see, so you can be who you have always known you could be.”

Truer words have not been uttered as to the importance of a coach. However, going through the recruiting process, most individuals have not done this on a regular basis. Looking to a coach, or in this case a recruiter, who does this every day will yield greater benefits than you can possibly imagine. Like any coaching situation, you have to be open minded enough to share your innermost thoughts regarding the recruiting process. I have referred to the trusted advisor many times in past blogs. This is actually one step higher. This is not only an advisor, but this is somebody who is truly on your side. They can make you see things that you do not necessarily want to see, or on the converse, make you see things that you ought to see. Working with a recruiter as a coach takes your whole recruiting experience to a new level. It is one of open communication and complete trustworthiness between both parties. When that can be attained, excellent recruiting results occur.

A Recruiter Is For Everyone: 

Trends In The Senior Level Recruiting Process

Now some would think that the more senior people we represent tend to be the “know-it-all”. With all their experience you would think that they would not need a coach (or in this case an experienced recruiter). You would also think that they would be uncomfortable sharing their financial situation with another person who is not necessarily in their family. You may also believe they would be more guarded and circumspect while working with an executive recruiter/coach. Nothing could be more opposite than what we have been able to find working with senior individuals in both bond counsel and public finance banker positions. The more senior an individual is, the more that they are aware of their need and desire for a coach/trusted advisor. They are more open to sharing their true financial picture, their needs, and letting you know where they really stand in the recruiting process.

Trends In The Junior Level Recruiting Process

On the other hand, the more junior people we work with, which is somewhat limited, are the exact opposite of the more senior bankers and attorneys. Personally, I cannot understand this. But if you happen to be one of those individuals that fall into this category, I ask you to be more open minded and share with your recruiter/coach more information. Be less guarded and listen to the advice that they render. With those elements, you two will have a successful recruiting process and experience. For those senior people that we’re fortunate enough to work with as the year is wrapping up, I want to say thank you to all of you – you know who you are that have trusted H Friedman Search with your recruiting needs. It was fun working with you!


If you would like to discuss your options, please reach out for a confidential conversation at 760-477-1284 or email at [email protected]. He can also be reached on LinkedIn

About Harlan Friedman, JD & Founding Member, H. Friedman Search LLC. Harlan is a thirty-year veteran Public Finance Banker turned recruiter who specializes in the placement of all level Public Finance Bankers, Health Care Bankers, Municipal Financial Advisors, Compliance Officers, Issuers, and Bond Counsels.