In the Top Echelon Network Spotlight: Phil Hurd

Phil Hurd of Oculus Search Partners is both a success story and a case study for the proper way to approach membership in Top Echelon Network.

And the first time he joined the Network, he quit.

However, success in Top Echelon is not about joining and immediately making split placements and shortly thereafter being enshrined into the “Top Echelon Hall of Fame.” (Wait a minute . . . we have a “Hall of Fame”?)

Phil Hurd of Oculus Search Partners, LLC

Phil Hurd

Instead, it’s about desire, commitment, and perseverance, not necessarily in that order. Phil has exhibited all of those traits, and as a result, has achieved a degree of consistent production in the Network.

Overall, Phil has made 29 split placements in Top Echelon totaling $170K in fees. Not only that, but 17 of those placements have also been finalized this year. Phil currently sits in 20th place overall in Top Echelon Network in terms of cash-in generated during the past 12 months.

Not bad for a guy who thought he was getting nothing out of Network membership the first time he joined TE.

“I joined Top Echelon initially in 2017, but I had no plan whatsoever,” said Phil. “As a one-person company, it just seemed like a good thing to do. However, after a few months of paying dues and getting nothing out of it—because I was not doing anything with it—I quit.”

Phil emphasized the last part of that sentence because he realized that the problem was he didn’t do anything with his membership. Unfortunately, there are some recruiters who join the Network, don’t do anything with their membership, and quit.

Phil, though, came back. And he came back in a big way, with a sharper focus and a strategic plan for achieving success.

“In 2019, I decided to give it another try, but this time with a little bit more of a specific plan of how to approach it,” said Phil. “I started having more results this time!”

If everybody who quit Top Echelon Network rejoined with Phil’s attitude, what a wonderful world this would be.

According to Phil, below are four additional takeaways that have been instrumental to his success as a member of Top Echelon’ s recruiting network:

#1—Make adjustments to your approach and strategy.

It’s as simple as, “Do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.” Top Echelon Network membership rewards those recruiters who proactively discover the unique ways in which they can make the most split placements and the most money with other members.

According to Phil, he switched from being an importer to being an exporter because he thought it would be a better fit with his personality and strengths. And he was right!

“When I joined, my plan was to be mostly a jobs importer,” said Phil. “I’ve made a couple of placements that way, but as it turns out, I made a conscious decision a year ago to focus on becoming a candidate exporter, and since then, my results have increased greatly.”

#2—Work the way your trading partners work.

You may be a solo practitioner out in the world, but you don’t work in a vacuum in Top Echelon Network. Phil understands this, and he knows that the more he can tailor the way he works to match his trading partners, the more successful he can be.

“I’m constantly thinking of new ways to generate candidates for my TE Network trading partners, and I modify my approach for the uniqueness of each partner’s work methods,” he said. “I’m also willing to put in the joint effort with my partners to qualify and close candidates.”

#3—Enthusiasm and confidence never go out of style.

Not only has Phil found that split placements can be a regular part of his business model, but he’s also found that they’ve injected a measure of excitement back into his recruiting desk.

“It’s not an exaggeration to say that it’s completely revitalized my business model,” he said. “I’m more enthusiastic about my work and the results than I’ve been in many years.”

Phil’s commitment to being a candidate exporter has reaped quite a few benefits, one of which is that he’s expanded his business in ways he was not able to do before joining TE.

“I’m now having success placing people across multiple industries and in many parts of the U.S. and even a couple internationally,” he said. “I’m helping many more people make connections than I ever did before joining the Network.”

#4—Treat your trading partners like your clients.

Down through the years, this might be the single-best piece of advice that we’ve given to Top Echelon Network recruiters, and Phil whole-heartedly endorses this wisdom. That’s because he’s seen the practical benefits of its application on his interactions with other members. It’s one of the things that he would say to a new Network member to help them succeed.

“Have a strategy for getting to know people in the Network and starting to work with them,” said Phil. “And then keep adjusting your methods so that you can give the best-possible service to your TE Network trading partners by treating them as your clients.”

And perhaps something else that can be learned from Phil’s case study is that you can never be too experienced to make split placements. After all, Phil had been a recruiter for multiple decades before he joined the Network. But he eventually went from novice to pro, despite the fact he wasn’t too crazy about splits.

“I honestly had no idea [how Top Echelon worked],” said Phil. “In my 35-year recruiting career, before I joined TE Network, I was not a big fan of doing splits. I had never done them through a network, just a few one-off splits.”

Now Phil knows a lot more people who like to make split placements, and he likes making them a lot more, as well.

One can only imagine where Top Echelon Network would be today if everybody was a quitter like Phil Hurd.

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