Business development is probably the most challenging part of being a recruiter. And because BD can be tough, it’s easy to fall into the habit of sticking to the same strategy and processes every day because that’s what you’re comfortable with.
But comfortable doesn’t get you results!
If you’re looking to get a better return from your BD efforts, pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone by trying new strategies is the best way to do it. Here are a few things to try.
Approach every day like a rookie
When I was a recruiter, I always noticed that people who were brand new to the job tended to take more risks and make the calls that none of us with more experience would dare to make. And often, they would actually win business from accounts that most of us had already written off!
The reason this works is that rookies rock the status quo by approaching the market with an open attitude and fresh confidence, whereas the rest of us are too scared of the rejection.
But just think of the opportunity you have there with your experience and skillset - all you need is to add rookie recruiter’s fresh-faced enthusiasm into the mix!
Aim high and laser focus
These are the clients you’re probably too afraid to call – but why?
While it’s important to keep in with those clients you know you can easily serve, your BD strategy should also include a few clients who feel a little bit out of reach. That’s what keeps things interesting!
So choose three prospects that sit outside of your BD comfort zone and write down the reasons why they would want to work with you, what value can you bring to the table and what you can potentially do to stand out from all the other recruiters trying to win their business.
Then, block off some time each week (even just a couple of hours a week) where all you do is focus specifically on those accounts. Make it during your BD golden hour to ensure you’re at your best - you’d be surprised what you can achieve when you’re laser focussing on a client you really want.
Try and test new sales tactics
But the important thing about prospecting outside of your comfort zone is that you want to ditch the tactics have work best for you in the past and go for an approach you’ve never tried before.
To give yourself the best shot of success with trying out a new tactic, analyse your recruitment data from the last 2 years to get some comfort in the knowledge of what the data shows you’re good at.
You can then use this knowledge to fuel yourself towards taking risks: How can you apply your strengths to a new platform or BD tool to get better results?
Just remember to approach any new BD methods as an experiment: if it works, that’s great and do more of it; if it doesn’t, stop what you’re doing and learn from it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!
Plan and practice
When you’re trying something totally new with your BD strategy, having a solid plan in place and practicing before you try it out on a prospect will give you more confidence and increase your chances of success.
A plan will also help you break down what appears to be a daunting task down into easy bite-sized chunks, making them less scary and a lot more achievable.
If it’s a new call or video prospecting strategy you’re going with, a few practice runs will help you iron out any potential stumbling blocks that could put you off going outside your comfort zone again.
And having the space to practice in private is a big perk of recruiting at home if you’re not back in the office yet!
Learn to love discomfort
All the progress you make in becoming a better recruiter lies outside of your comfort zone, which is why this is so important to think about and practice.
Frankly, your comfort zone should terrify you! It represents ‘as good as you’ll ever get’ at being a recruiter – and no good sales person will accept that.
There’s no growth without discomfort and the more you see positive results from the discomfort, this will become something that excites you and eventually will actively seek out.
Download the eBook below to find out how to upgrade your sales strategy and try something different.
David is a Senior Growth Outreach Specialist at Firefish. After working as a 360 recruiter, he loves innovating recruitment with Firefish Software.