Murali Dharan emailed me some thoughts after reading my article:
I have been thinking and trying to write on the most desirable qualities which anyone wanting to win in recruitment need to possess... and the one word that comes to my mind is PASSION..... i see most people wanting to be in recruitment may be as it is easy 'percieved' and a desk job.....
My own experience is that to win in recruitment, the most critical ingredient is the ability to acquire knowledge by the day by the hour about contemporary skills, competition, client, candidate, aspirations, comp and ben trends... and much more.
What would your comment be??
I would surely agree with Murali, because the most valuable employee you can get is one who is passionate and knowledgeable about the area you are hiring him/her for.
However, the questions we in HR and as hiring managers grapple with is what happens when only one of the two qualities are present in an individual.
What happens when you get people who are knowledgeable and competent but don't have the passion? Can you help in igniting their passion? As people managers a lot of people might say yes, but when business pressures come, often the "developing passion in team" task gets relegated to the background.
Then there are the other thoughts - can you really develop passion in people? If a sales person is not excited making a sale, how much can one develop him/her?
What happens when a person has passion and knowledge or competence? At certain stages in certain organizations you can afford to have an 'academy setting' where people are training or educated from almost zero. However, in organizations that need to maintain a low cost overhead can you really afford to have a passionate person without knowledge - akin to having a bull in a china shop?
So how can you get the perfect recruiter (or any other candidate, for that matter)?