We are all creatures of habit; get up, work, sleep, repeat. We feel more at ease when we have a plan and structure in place something that gives us a sense of not only purpose but accomplishment. The ascendancy of my career in recruitment was rife with structure; core hours, weekly catch ups, monthly presentations, quarterly reviews. Which is exactly what you need when you’re trying to wrap your head around not only a new profession but a new industry that you are soon to be an expert in. We recruiters love a bit of structure if only to feel like we are heading in the right direction and it is also important when having to present your real-time fees at the drop of a hat.
The genesis of a recruiter’s week is the Monday morning meeting. If you’re anything like me you jot down the progress of all your deals on the Friday arvo so you can avoid the frantic scroll through your outlook calendar on a sluggish Monday morning. I know many a recruiter who use the weekend as a time to blow of steam and as a result, the finer details of a deal may be lost in the infinite chorus’ of Galway Girl and cheap ‘piss’. My first introduction to this cornerstone of a recruitment week was in truth a baptism of fire! At the time there was a number of very good recruiters and even a couple of record breakers in attendance, a boardroom which better resembled an auction of a 4-bedroom detached in Sandringham; one person said a ridiculously high number and then the next person went painfully higher.
I remember one ill-fated Monday morning I had got up especially early, not for a quick 5K and a spot of sunrise yoga as you would think. I was coming to terms with the early stages of food poisoning from an undercooked steak and cheese pie, looking back it was probably my own mediocre cooking abilities as appose to the ball being dropped by Countdown at the production stage. Nevertheless, I made my way to my Monday morning meeting paler than usual. I presented my current fee’s, my predictions and reasoning to how I was going to reach my target to a pulsating boardroom; brightly colored socks and ties were even more abrasive than usual. Profusely sweating in a boardroom, I resembled an unprepared Dragons Den contestant more than a fledgling recruitment consultant. As soon as the last person sheepishly gave their numbers I made a beeline to the men’s room. After the final flush, I thought to myself “why do we do Monday morning meetings!?”
At Rice when we have a long weekend with a day off on Monday we forgo the catch up on Tuesday morning and it gives me a glimpse of what life would be like without it. I found I was straight on the phone calling clients and attacking the inbox with real vigor. If you start at 8 am and your meeting is at 8:45 am chances are that isn’t your most productive 45 minutes of the week. I was talking with Steve Cotton of Absolute IT at our recent Access night and he was telling me that they conduct their ‘Monday morning’ meetings on a Wednesday. Eclipse Recruitment on the North Shore has a catch up late morning Friday. I can understand the logic behind this. Sometimes after your Monday morning meeting you will return back to your desk, check your email and the deal you have just explained will save your month is null and void. Our weeks can change for better or worse with one phone call, your week may look completely different from the beginning of Monday to the end of it.
I like to hear about agencies going against the grain, looking at how their office works and deciding to try something a bit different. I’m not advocating for the disbandment of the Monday morning meeting all together but if the conventional formulae of the standard week can be tweaked then what else can be? With more and more smaller agencies popping up in the market consultants are taking the good from previous workplaces and putting their own spin on the working week. If you have any examples of doing things differently then I’d love to hear about them in the comment section 😊