If you are a novice, negotiating with a client can be a bit intimidating. It can also be scary even if you've been doing it for years. Establishing your own department's or company's scope and parameters will provide the confidence needed when venturing into uncharted territory with a new client or renegotiating terms with an existing one. Do the homework necessary to fully comprehend the clients' needs and goals. Having a clear understanding will ease both parties through this essential communication.

Whether you are a corporate or third-party recruiter, there are some best practices to keep in mind during the service cycle. There are no tricks to this trade, just straight-forward work and mindful responsiveness.


Develop and maintain respect for your potential client/company. You cannot truly represent your client or company if you do not value the product or service represented. This speaks to preparation and attention to detail. Again with the homework? yep.

You are a team. You are not adversaries. This is not a tug of war. Pulling each other away from the goal or pushing each other in opposite directions is detrimental to achieving that goal. Hopefully, you want the same thing; if not, do the right thing. Walk away.

Be on the lookout for business opportunities that allow growth for both, you and your client. In an industry that requires extensive research and networking, there are many occasions to review other businesses, services, and products. If you run across one that you know a client or HM would benefit from, share the information. This shows that you are in tune with the company and that you truly care about their progress, beyond your own monetary gain.

Be flexible. Not enough can be said, in this economy, about the willingness to bend or tailor your services. This is rapidly becoming a necessity in order to keep a client or get one. The competition will fall away when your client or hiring manager knows you mean business and that business is helping them achieve success.

When reaching out to those we serve, it is important know what your breaking point is and stick with it. Don't compromise yourself or those you represent.

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This post shows to me a great deal of wisdom of doing business in these troubled, or any other, times. It is incredibly difficult to move from a highly competitive model to a collaborative or, god forbid, a collective (semi-socialist?) model. I've heard people talk about it, but how many people have "the actual courage to do it."

Being a recruiter (headhunter?) for the last twenty five years I have seen recruiting go from it's wild west days to a much more mature, perhaps over digitized (and alienated), model For the last four years I have almost worked exclusively with splits where the issues alluded to above are truly pushed to their limits (e. g., trust issues are particularly put to the test). Particularly when headhunter's/recruiters often, or at least used to self identify themselves as "lone wolves."

As much as I like what is said above, and maybe this is implied in the the statement "be flexible", I feel one at all costs try to avoid an absolutist, rigid, all or nothing attitude. Each point, in itself, can be excruciatingly difficult to realize given our cultural, including corporate, conditioning of rugged individualism, an attitude which globalization is making increasingly counter-productive. I don't mean to sound preachy or pedantic, and I feel at an essential level, we are all in this together which the underlies the "the spirit" of the above statement.

Personally I am in the initial process of integrating career/life (and perhaps corporate) coaching into my recruiting practice. This is very challenging and the above principles, if I can call them that, are extremely helpful in moving towards my goal

This is my first posting/reply in this forum and I hope what I am saying is not inappropriate.
Mike, your final remark was inappropriate. Fretting about a straight-forward comment like yours seems - how should I put it nicely: overly nice and therefore less sincere than I assume you mean to be.

The same phenomenon is seen throughout your comment.
collective (semi-socialist?). recruiter (headhunter?)

You've been in the business 25 years; are you still not certain whether it's okay to use the colloquial term, headhunter? I suspect that in your work as a life coach you do not advise your clients to be so meek and hesitant. Why do it here?
I really appreciate your feedback. I think you perceive my ambivalence about my total dedication to headhunting at this point in my career. Perhaps I have become too idealistic for this very pragmatic and rewarding field. However, I love blogging (which I just got into), and coaching- just started a blog.
For me 9/11 and the dot com bomb transformed my worldview, following my most productive years.
My reference to collective refers to my local recruiting network in Boston, which is great. I wouldn't say I am meek, but rather sometimes I tend to think when I should act. But when I'm pushed to the wall I will retaliate (too bad I'm not more proactive- I'm certainly trying). I am also tenacious which helps my headhunting . Thanks, again for your feedback. You are a very perceptive person and, my feeling is you are probably an excellent recruiter. Recruiting Animal said:
Mike, your final remark was inappropriate. Fretting about a straight-forward comment like yours seems - how should I put it nicely: overly nice and therefore less sincere than I assume you mean to be.

The same phenomenon is seen throughout your comment.
collective (semi-socialist?). recruiter (headhunter?)

You've been in the business 25 years; are you still not certain whether it's okay to use the colloquial term, headhunter? I suspect that in your work as a life coach you do not advise your clients to be so meek and hesitant. Why do it here?

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