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From the Roster to the Real World: Teamwork and Other Keys to Success

Sep 06, 2023

Growing up, I tried pretty much every sport once. From swimming to basketball to soccer to lacrosse – I tried it all. Before coming to Russell Tobin, recruiting was something I had never tried. With no professional experience under my belt, I was concerned that I might not be prepared for the challenge that was ahead of me. To my surprise, I quickly realized that the core values of being an athlete and being a recruiter are quite similar; the years of sports, from little league to college, prepared me more than I could have imagined.

Investment in Others: There’s No ‘I’ In Team

For anyone who has ever played a sport in their life, I can guarantee you’ve heard this phrase at least once before, “There is no ‘I’ in team!” While recruiting may seem like an individual sport, there is a definitely a level of teamwork and an investment in others that will lead you to success. In my case, I rely on a number of people to help me along the way; from my sales team, who establish and foster client relationships and partnerships and my manager who from the beginning has guided and mentored me along the way, all the way to the HR and Operations team that ensure the onboarding of candidates goes smoothly and efficiently. This concept of investment in others isn’t exclusive to my internal teammates either – it expands to those outside of my immediate network to clients and candidates as well. While individual motivation can produce success, nothing feels better than putting in hard work and dedication to finally finding the perfect candidate for a client or helping a candidate find a job that they truly love.

Drive: “Hard Work Beats Talent, Talent Doesn’t Work Hard”

While I may have played a number of different sports growing up, I’ll be the first to say I was never the best (or even close) at most of them, however, I was determined to get better. More often than not, there is going to be someone who is more talented than you, but it’s important to carry that intrinsic motivation through most things in life or else you’ll never continue to grow. It would be easy to go to work every day and just run through the motions, especially when you don’t necessarily have someone pushing you forward. When you’re having a bad day, it’s important to keep a positive outlook and continue to push forward. But it is always important to remember that when you’re having a good day, you don’t get complacent and you continue to have that same drive to get better every single day.

Adaptability: “Control the Controllable(s)”

Now this is a phrase that my college coach said to us quite often, and to be honest it’s a concept I still struggle with to this day. In both sports and recruiting there are going to a number of variables that you can’t control; from the weather that day and referees that you just don’t agree with, to a particularly difficult job description or a candidate declining a job offer that you really thought would accept. While it can be frustrating and easy to let factors like these get you down, it’s important how well you can adapt to them – that is what truly matters. It’s inevitable that there will be losses, but if you work hard and continue to work past the uncontrollable(s), there will also be an abundance of wins.