I recently attended a dance competition which was hosted by professional judges and dancers from across the region, numbering in their hundreds; all competing for accolades of trophies and medals to represent their hard graft and determination after months of rehearsals.
What astounded me about the ambience of this event, hosted in a large auditorium, was how collaborative everyone was; throughout the performances- which lasted 9 hours!- people supported their competitors at the end of each round, applauded those who beat them to higher posts and cheered on those who made it to the top 3 rankings of each category.
I shared my views instantly over on LinkedIn that why I found this particularly inspiring as a recruiter, was that, despite being up against each other, competing for the crowning glory of being top team, solo and duo, everyone was routing for whomever was performing because they were respectful of their efforts to be there in the first place; in awe of how this dancer was proving their worth in front of their peers; impressed by their showmanship and tenacity to push through pain and stamina barriers. Every dancer was genuinely relishing the chance to marvel at the creativity of others.
And it made me think: recruiters could learn a lot from those kids.
- Celebrate success: share more testimony of who has done a great job for you- write endorsements on LinkedIn for those who have done a great service for you, acknowledge the efforts of someone without them asking for it.
- Learn from your competitors: I have had a mantra that it doesn’t matter what my competition are doing as I am going to do what I do best. And whilst this is true, actually it IS important that I see what others are doing- possibly I can learn something from them in how they present an opportunity, operate or promote themselves. As a dancer can watch another performer and think, I can try that move and add my own flair to it, we can apply the same in recruitment, surely?
- Respect and encourage this mutually: there has become a saddening trend on LinkedIn particularly of “naming and shaming” and also moaning about competitors publicly. Thus creating a rather negative view of recruitment generally and turning off thousands of users as a futile and pointless exercise, simply to stir their connections to look at their profile and get more views. How about we start showing respect for others and if you’ve an issue with someone, take it up with them privately. By all means, if you have a testimony to learn from retrospectively, write an informative blog with pseudonyms for others to read latterly- as a constructive learning document.
- Set the standard: surround yourself with fellow professionals on your networks who conduct themselves with decorum and you will find that you naturally transcend away from those who reply you. You will attract other successful positive people by always behaving with integrity in everything your say, do and write. Remember that your digital footprint is here forever so share posts and articles of a very high standard of which you are proud to be associated with.
My daughter was competing for the first time in this regional tournament – she danced her heart out; she remained focused, positive and determined throughout the whole endurance test and came out with a trophy and medal far exceeding her expectation. She actually twisted her knee towards the end of the day- we didn’t realise this until she got home as adrenaline got her through – but she worked through the pain with her focus on a prize and she didn’t disappoint. As part of her troupe, they came 3rd, she made it to second round of solo and in her duo team they came 2nd out of hundreds of kids. Her first ever dance comp and she smashed it.
She taught me that whatever you do in work, regardless of your job, there will be challenging moments – her rejection at second round in solo; but she kept smiling; she sat and watched the other dancers who had got through- in awe and admiration; and most importantly, she honed in on her best strengths at the right time to make herself stand out.
Wise advice from a 9 year old and something we can all learn from.