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"Abby's insights show her in-depth understanding of the field, her knowledge of the nuances and potential pitfalls of the recruiting process and a sensitivity to both the employer and potential employees."
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Career Tips - Supersonic Searching Mondays
Written by Abby Kohut   

One of the most common questions I receive about headhunters is "How do I find a headhunter when they aren't already hunting me?" The answer, as usual, depends on your persistence, your motivation, and your creativity, which are the same three skills that you need in this job market to land quickly.

Back in the days before the web took over, there were things called books and they lived in places called bookstores. I know that books are getting a little old fashioned, but stick with me here for a moment…

The best directory of search firms out there is the The Directory of Executive Recruiters, published by Kennedy Publications. Commonly known as the Red Book, the directory lists all of the search firms and offers great detail on what they specialize in, where they are located, and how long they have been in business. If you are on a budget, you may wish to look for the book in your library (my library has last years edition - call number R 658.4071 DIR) or split the cost with a job search buddy.

In this day and age, many larger search firms now have their own websites, where you can find information about what they specialize in. The problem is that you may have trouble finding specific websites because, headhunters don't necessarily want to be found. Try searching "engineering headhunter" or "medical device search firm". You'll find some but you will not find many.

Once again, enter the hero called LinkedIn. Here is where you will find your best source of recruiters, from corporate to search firm. Better yet, you'll find out where they worked before they joined their company, how long they have been doing recruiting, and what they specialize in. Best of all, you'll get to read their recommendations or you'll notice that they don't have any. Look for recommendations from both clients and job seekers. The best ones will have 5-10 recommendations and will have been headhunting in your industry or occupation for at least 10 years. Since headhunters are using LinkedIn so readily, you should also have a profile that is in tip top shape with a bunch of your own recommendations.

There are also Twitter Twibes, Linked in Groups and Facebook pages and groups where great networking abounds. The most well networked headhunters will be hanging out in all of these places and so should you.

Absolutely Abby’s Advice:
We call them headhunters because that is what they do…they hunt. Most of them would rather hunt than be hunted so you have to think like a headhunter to track them down. What groups would you join? What keywords would you use to advertise your site with? Where would your favorite haunts be? Then, act like a headhunter and go hunting.
 
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Drawn from my 18 years of experience and research in recruiting and Human Resources, my blog posts are intended to provide insight into what corporate recruiters and Human Resource professionals look for when they are evaluating your qualifications. Simply reading these blogs will not guarantee you success. However, consistently applying the strategies mentioned, as well as developing your own personal interview style, will greatly enhance your chances of victory amidst the competition. I wish you the best of luck with your search as you begin to take charge of your career!