I held a belief for a long time that if you find an organization that you liked, it’s possible you can stay there for 5-10 years. The organization I wanted to work for was NPR because at the time, they seemed to be the last bastion of news and I wanted to recruit the best journalists and storytellers. I got through the first step when I was an HR intern, then I thought I made the biggest regret when I didn’t apply for the HR Assistant position. The few years irked me and frankly distracted me from my job at the time.
In 2008, I left a nonprofit I worked for to started my own recruiting business mostly to be out there and partly out of frustration. It was also that time reality sets in. I saw that NPR were laying of a good number of their staff and I thought of myself that it could of been me laying off if I was there and knew immediately companies are businesses and not a dream.
What I learned about the six years of owning my business was that I was great at everything and I was a great networker. However, there was one thing I was not good at, which is the most important skill in business, is business development. I’m great at talking to people one-to-one or what they’re looking for, but I’m not the one who would handle the company guidelines or make a great and deceitful pitch that I can’t offer. I’m frankly too honest and hence I prefer to be known as independent recruiter (don’t call me consultant).
After realizing my strengths and weaknesses, I folded my businesses and tried to find work from staffing firms and freelancing sites. The freelancing sites were my savior as I made proposals to several recruiting projects. Some were decent, some were bad, and some were off the wall.
(True story: My proposal was accepted by a small business in Delaware. They wanted an all-star board and wanted Kansas City Royals owner David Glass and the CEO of Bank of America.)
Those small jobs were helpful as they kept me up on my recruiting and talent acquisition skills. It also helped that I learned about the different industries, so my recruiter narrative became much stronger. In addition, these small jobs made me realize that I won’t stay in an organization that long and that I work best to help start build a foundation and leave if everything is alright or going south and I accept that.
This is why I accepted the role with The HR Source because they wanted to change their ways and created a position, just for me, to achieve their vision. This is why I enjoy being a journeyman.
Picture via NBC/Universal/Comcast