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Why moving jobs made me a more understanding recruiter

November 2021

It was almost exactly a year ago that I moved to LTN & Partners, and I’ve thought on several occasions what a useful experience that was for me in my day-to-day job.

Having spent nine years with my previous employers and initially securing that role via a referral (which was very straightforward), I felt out of the loop in terms of the emotional investment that goes into a job switch. Quite an odd thing to say, when for the last eighteen years I have been facilitating career moves for other people.

Just as a seasoned train driver probably doesn’t get as excited about his shift as my 6-year-old son would at the prospect of a day at the controls, it’s inevitable that elements of any job can become desensitised.

It was a great to get a first-hand reminder that changing employers is one of the biggest decisions that we make in our lives. We might have perfectly logical reasons for wanting to change, though the mind does funny things, and I was soon questioning if the grass really is greener on the other side, when I contemplated my own move.

Most people aren’t desperate to switch employers, will have plenty of colleges that they get on well with and loads of happy memories. Leaving all that to work with complete strangers is daunting, and since when has a jump into the unknown been anything other than scary?

Interviews require clever scheduling and homework before, whilst once being quizzed you find yourself trying to read minds and quickly become hypersensitive (bordering on paranoid) to any signals given off.

I used a recruiter for my process and was hugely thankful that I did. Whilst I discussed the move at length with family and friends, having someone on my side who was able to gauge the temperature in the ‘other camp’ was invaluable.

Perhaps most importantly, it has given me a renewed appreciation for what my candidates are going through and, if I can continue to keep that at the front of my mind then hopefully, I can reduce stress levels and help guide people through this tricky maze. The older I get the more I like to focus on being as helpful as possible and less on the outcome. I’m grateful to have had this real-world learning and look forward to continuing to grow and develop the service I can offer. 

This sounds so cheesy and I’m struggling to believe I’m writing it, but in a small way I feel I can make a real difference to my candidates and make the world a happier place. Namaste to that!

To discuss this topic further and/or chat about your future career plans please contact Andrew Smallwood – or +44 7779 781 810

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