I, like many of you, sat down with the boss pre-holiday to talk about performance and what 2013 will bring. In 2012, my sourcing work life was completely focused on process improvement and an inherent “need for speed”. At some point it felt like I was living a mash-up of The Bionic Woman and Top Gun, completely focused on being better, stronger, faster. What sources were the most viable and robust, how did we rip candidate data as fast as possible and how did we, as the sourcing team, help or hinder the process….and if we are hindering, how do we fix that? And along the way I decided to take on the most speaking gigs I've ever done. It was a busy year.
Analyzing and improving processes, is, quite frankly, an obnoxious task. Rarely do you find a fix on the first go, so 2012 was the year of “the tweak”. So really, the pre-holiday lunch was a celebration….we had figured out so much, dumped crappy practices and streamlined our sourcing so that instead of allowing 24 hours for a list of pre-qualified candidates, we are accomplishing it in less than 3. Huge. Just huge.
So what's next? How do you grow when you're the lead…and the manager….and no one else does your job in the company? Because I love my job…really really love it. I was telling one of my friends that I've never had an opportunity to work on such diverse opportunities with such great organizations that stretch me professionally. I feel our clients offer that professional growth for me and the value add they make to the community, and the world, are important to me. I can't individually change the world but if I can help hire the people that can? Rock on.
For 2013, I have some work resolutions to continue to improve my performance as a sourcer. Where do I begin?
The first hour of my day. I have had a really bad habit for years of being a constant email checker, to the point at the end of 2012 I wasn't even making it out of bed before I checked email. That's bad. It sends your mind in 100 different directions and not necessarily productive directions. 2013? I read. Pull up Flipboard and get through Tech, News, HBR, Google Reader, Twitter, and so on. Just what does Lance Haun have happening on SourceCon? Has the BooleanBlackBelt proposed a new theory? Anything new in sourcing groups? In the beginning, it felt luxurious and slightly naughty. Spend an hour first thing just sipping coffee and reading? Not hopping online to work? But reading is work and expands what we are willing to consider as we build sourcing strategies. And apps like FlipBoard make it an opportunity to digest a lot of content in a very short period of time. For sourcers well versed in creating search strings and strategy, we have to read. To find new resources and test tactics, it really is an imperative.
Change my perspective. My uncle use to jokingly say “well look at it this way” and then twist his head in some bizarre way to drive home the point that perspective is everything. For years I've been sitting on my proverbial bum, sourcing my heart out. Starting this week, I'm standing. All the time. My new desk should be here from Amazon any day now and my co-worker who embraced this practice more than 6 months ago raves about its benefits. Not just the physical health benefits but the mental clarity as well.
Kelly is the Recruitment Manager for Westat, a leading social science research organization headquartered in Rockville, Maryland.