Success. Is it defined by actions? How you treat others? The number of fills you obtain?

A month ago we had the privilege to meet the American Idol from last year Kris Allen at an event I had won tickets to from our local radio station, among the perks were the opportunity to discuss success with Kris Allen and what it meant to him. It was a brief exchange, but he said in so many words, that hard work pays off.

I had to wonder - about life after you become famous, what does it mean and what does it give to you.

It brings an enormous amount of pressure to your life. But wait, don't we all face that.

I recently returned to the staffing industry with the opportunity to work with netPolarity, a very successful firm whose management is focused and committed to greatness every day.

I once heard if you surround yourself with great people you will eventually find the way forward. So here I stand, what now?

I had a conversation with our CEO the other day and he said people quickly forget the success you had in the past and you must remind them quickly every day what that means.

That set me thinking, how do folks like Kris Allen succeed in the face of enormous pressure? It came to me - it is commitment to greatness, it is consistency of purpose, and it is the knowledge internally that you can make a difference in spite of what others may say.

People who say it can't be done, or send a message of any negativity are those that are trying to define their outlook, and may have not quite found it yet. Let's face it, each of us get's in a rut from time to time, but the greatest definition is how you rise after a fall from grace.

We heard a song from Kris Allen that I think puts in perspective what I mean. You can view it here. We NEED TO LIVE LIKE WE'RE DYING:

We have one life. We have one chance to fill that difficult role, we have one chance to change a life for the better, we have 86,400 seconds in a day.

That is success, realizing that you have the ability, the opportunity, to stop looking at the clock and "LIVE LIKE WE'RE DYING."

Facing the life we have, the circumstances we may be dealt, the requisition that is like a bag of bricks, where the hiring manager hasn't written the clearest job description, where the money and benefits for selling are not exactly perfect, and being able to make a match that sticks and where the manager and employee are happy - that is success.

Fills are to me a synergy where everything comes together.

In the past I had access to my hiring managers, and could communicate directly, in my current role not so much - where my company's business is defined by VMS orders. I have had to rethink my approach. It is a new way to recruit, that where I once owned the whole process, now I am in essence a part of the process, trying to source the best of the best with a targeted string and supporting a stellar recruiting team to create value where I can possibly find it.

This is a unique challenge - for I enjoy the hunt and the effort. Perhaps this is why I love staffing so much. While tools like the internet, social media, and other advanced technology tools have changed the way we look at things, still I strive to find the networking power I have always owned and that has been the mainstay of success in my career.

Fills will come as you lay to the side your pride, and look to the requisition to understand it's most important requirements. Where can one do this - in the inward commitment as you begin your day to look at what you can do to create a difference. Can you save time for the hiring manager, or for a co-worker by seeing the details through the smoke and mirrors and really find the stellar and A + candidates. Can you pick up the phone and ask the questions you need to ask, can you take it upon yourself to fight the battles that need to be fought at the right time, and the right place, and with the right attitude? That is what is needed to get the fill these days. Where hiring managers are now more picky than ever it may just take a bit of coaxing and some strategy to move the mountains. That is what it takes. The creativity to create passive sourcing strategies, and pipelining that is well defined and where you seek the skills before the day the pressure arrives. And seeing the trends on the horizon to prepare. There is no luxury like in the past - the candidates we call upon will have choices. The A + folks will always be wooed from multiple sides. But your commitment to the candidates best interests, and not your own inward desire - if they are not ready you kindly ask for a referrel and move on. That is success.

Can you give a candidate who has the drive but not necessarily all the skills the critical career opening they need.

Our industry is full of people who forget the purpose of their recruiting drive. The close and the fill are not all about money. There is a higher purpose. A definitive - moral purpose - that is to put the right person in the right place at the right time.

That my friends is the definition.

In meeting Kris Allen I met one of the most humble super stars that I have had privilege of seeing. High Billers - do you walk with purpose and inner fire knowing that the money is a side opportunity? Kris Allen impressed me by his friendliness, his realization that he got where he was today because of his fans. And I think the staffing industry can take a lesson from this.

I am a human being first, a HR professional 2nd, and a closer the 3rd. Just remember the next candidate could be your next customer, and your next client could be your next candidate. If you see people as widgets, well you have lost the purpose of what recruiting is all about.

Success is defined by your family, relationships, and the passion you bring for putting people back to work again. And that is living with purpose as if your life depended on it.

Remember 9/11/2001. For a time we remembered as a nation what brought us together, our common bond.

And success is defined by the relationships and the opportunities and doors you open for others. And by the way the $$ comes when you flip your perspective to see through the human eyes. Recruiting/Staffing/HR is all about the people - and no technology will ever replace the human part of the contact.

Deals will always be about putting others first. And that is what makes those who remain great for a long time the best among us. That is life in a nutshell.

If you ever feel down about the economic circumstances of our time, don't forget what helped you get your last fill - tenacity, hope, and persistence to close the tough req. I had my share of that last week. And securing an interview next week for one of the toughest reqs I have yet faced. Well, that was a product of persistence. Remember, that life is about the effort you put in, the relationships you build and the passion you have for helping your network move to where they are trying to get. Along the way there are plenty of rewards. But the perspective of how to secure those rewards the right way will always be up to you. LIVE LIKE WE'RE DYING - you only have 1 LIFE AFTER ALL!

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