Recruitment Consultant Series Part 6: Communication Within Sales

Here’s part 6 of the series “So you’ve become a recruitment consultant… what does that really mean?” and if you started reading this when you joined the industry, then you’re already halfway through your probation.


Last week we looked at communication, this week we’ll take a moment to look at why it’s important to relate communication specifically to the sales techniques that you use in recruitment – whether this is face to face in meetings or telephone sales.

We all have our own personal communication style. As a salesperson it’s looking at how we can adjust, to build rapport with our candidates and clients. There’s an age-old saying “People like people like themselves”. To be able to utilise this, it means that we have to be able to adapt to other personalities and in essence be a bit like a chameleon, blending in with our environment.

Here’s a quick synopsis of just one or two traits of four common personality types, that can help you build a better relationship and achieve more in your sales communications;-

The Actor – When dealing with an actor they tend to be easy to spot. They like to talk about themselves and their successes. They’re happy to flaunt their achievements and are therefore likely to have certificates, awards and trophies in full view.

Tip: The aim when dealing with the actor is to ask them about themselves… easy huh? They will be happy to share and as long as you mention your success rates, the calibre of other clients you work with backed up with testimonials, they’ll want to join forces and work with you.

The Thinker – The thinker is the one that will take their time when making a decision. Very frustrating to a recruitment consultant, but this is the way they do business, so don’t rush them in your communication. They will come to their answer in the end.

Tip: Give them timeframes to work to, but make sure that you’ve also given them enough data and statistical information for them to make their reasoned decision.

The Doer – the doer tends to be the total opposite to the thinker when it comes to making decisions. They are ‘spur of the moment’ people, very spontaneous and happy to cut through any red tape to get things done. This means that they will try to rush you.

Tip: Your communication has to be concise and to the point. The aim is to make sure they have all the facts before they make their decision and ask a lot of “What happens if…?” and “What would be the knock on effect?” questions, as they won’t always think through the consequences for themselves. You sometimes need to hold them back a little to get them to think it through.

The Friend – Everyone wants the friend as their customer. Lovely to deal with, happy to answer all of your questions, willing to share about their personal life, but normally more comfortable talking about you instead. Sounds ideal…? Think again. You end up doing more of the talking, which means you’re not gaining the information that you need to be able to sell a solution to their needs. The friend is also very unlikely to tell you when things are not right or if they’re using another supplier because “they didn’t want to upset you!”

Tip: It’ll be easy to talk about personal stuff and build a friendly relationship with them, so focus on asking the questions regarding the business and make sure you get an answer. The Friend doesn’t like confrontation, so make sure it’s an easy conversation and best to get in front of them as it’s easier to keep them on track with non-verbal communication signals (see part 5 – link above).

Try to analyse what your own candidates and clients personality traits are, and then adjust your approach to get the most out of the relationships that you are developing and remember, you’re the one that needs to change to make them feel more comfortable.  Do that and your sales conversations are likely to be longer and more successful.

Next week we’ll tackle structuring your sales calls and meetings to gain the most out of each.




Angela Cripps
Angela Cripps
ANGELA has 25 years of experience in the recruitment industry and calls herself an industry advocate - anything that raises standards and Angela is likely to have a link to it somewhere. A professional trainer for the past 15 years, her LinkedIn profile shows she currently works for industry bodies. As a select member of our BizProphets "thought leadership" Panel, her expert insights afford industry participants the tools necessary to master the art of recruitment.

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