I’ve been sourcing for a long time. Seventeen years, exclusively, on top of that when I was a generalist and full-life cycle recruiter. I will say I source, not stalk. I could stalk, but that’s creepy.
Honestly, right now is my favorite time to source; it’s important to me personally to enjoy where I work and the clients I source for. My elevator speech is “I find people who want to do good; I specialize in non-profits.” I’m incredibly proud to say that because 5, 10, 15 years ago, I don’t think I’d ever have told you this is what I wanted to do. I don’t think I knew… I was just trying to get by and grow my career. Today, it’s incredibly satisfying to have a :30 elevator speech about finding people to go serve the greater good.
Why am I sharing this with you? Because today, at this moment, I have nothing to kvetch about. Sure I have some software that’s been bugging out for the last three days that I’ve got to deal with and there are candidates that have flaked, but ultimately, at the end of the day, I can still be the head cheerleader for where I work and what I do. Answering emails from jobseekers is not a chore for me—I have to do it. Every single one. Finding the unfindable—that’s an awesome task, as well. By taking on this job 5 years ago, I’ve established a sourcing process that runs incredibly smooth, efficiently, and effectively to deliver quality candidates to our clients. We’ve got the software, tools and people in place to make every search hum along. I’d be lying to say it wasn’t painful at times, of course it was!
The bonus to my job is not only do I find people to go “do good,” but I get to do some myself, including some pro bono work here and there. My next pro bono speaking gig? Chatting with Veterans on how to use LinkedIn. I can’t wait… I was asked to speak by someone who has attended nearly all of my public speaking gigs in D.C. and, even better, I get to repay some of the military community with what I hope is advice and guidance they can use.
I realize that knowing you are happy in your job and your life is a good thing. Waking up every morning looking forward to work? That’s a great thing. Especially when you have other outside responsibilities to negotiate. And the only way you can really know happiness is to not have had it. To have had horrible work-life balance, to be traveling when you don’t want, not seeing the people who are important to you on a regular basis and not doing what you consider to be meaningful work.
RecruitDC is coming, and it is what spurred all of these happy realizations. I took this survey which, with just a few short questions, made me realize how life has changed and what is important to me has changed. And if that wasn’t enough, fellow FOT writer Jason Pankow has just made a big move in his career that I am beyond happy to seem him make… he’s going out to help people do good.
So if you’re not happy in your job, do the usual: Update your resume and LinkedIn profile and network like crazy. But even more importantly, take a look at your life and how it’s changed. What do you need now to make you happy? Where do you want to go next? What do you want your elevator speech to be?
Kelly is the Recruitment Manager for Westat, a leading social science research organization headquartered in Rockville, Maryland.