Marc Tappis: Top Echelon Network ‘Success Stories’

So . . . just how can you be successful as a Preferred Member of Top Echelon Network?  What are the keys?  How do you do it?  In this new series in The Pinnacle newsletter, we’re going to interview some of the Top Producers in the Network and ask them what they’ve done to achieve success in Top Echelon.

Mark Tappis Recruiter Training

Marc Tappis

Recruiter: Marc Tappis


Agency: Opportunity Search, Inc.

Accomplishments within the Network:

Ranked #18 in the Network in 2009 in terms of the top-producing recruiters.  All of that was the result of split placements Tappis made with his Trading Partners.  He is currently ranked #4 in the Network.  (To view a complete list of the top-producing recruiters in Top Echelon, please visit the Members’ Area.)

Marc’s Key to Success: Providing Flexibility

Tappis takes an approach with clients, candidates, and even Trading Partners that allows him to be as productive as possible.  That approach involves, first and foremost, recognizing that success follows from the building of business and personal relationships.

“It’s all about relationships,” said Tappis, “whether they’re with candidates, clients, or Members of the Network.  I take a lot of pride in being nice to people and trying to treat people like I would want to be treated.  I always go the extra mile to be nice.”

In addition, Tappis strives to be extremely flexible when it comes to providing all of the people he works with what they want and ask for.  By doing so, the people he works with are much more likely to want to be aligned with him and work with him in the future. 

“I work with other people based upon their rules and not mine,” said Tappis. “I know there are a lot of recruiters who are very structured.  I take the attitude, ‘You’re the client, so you tell me how you want me to work. Some of my clients want me to extend offers, others want to extend them themselves.  Some want to set up interviews themselves others want me to do it. I am flexible and do what the client wants.  Every client is different.  I basically say you tell me how you want to work.’  I take that approach with every client, and I find this approach to be very successful.

“It’s very important to me that I make a concerted effort to build on relationships that I have with my clients.  Regardless of how many placements I make with them, I want them to keep coming back to me.  I visit all of my clients, I take them to lunch and sporting events, and I do the same thing with my candidates.  I get a lot of referrals and a lot of repeat business.  Going the extra mile is the key.

“Every client is different.  Every candidate is different.  They all don’t want to work the same way.  I have to be willing to work the way they want to work.”

“]Maryland Core Group

Maryland Regional Core Group. (Tappis is located in the back row, fourth from the right.) Participation in this Core Group has helped Tappis acheive Top Producer status as a Preferred Member of the Network.

Tappis also utilizes that approach in his dealings with other Top Echelon Preferred Members, thereby adhering to the Network mantra of “Treat your Trading Partners like your clients.”  Doing so has obviously paid dividends for Tappis, since he’s made 51 placements during his time in the Network.

“Some TE Members want a lot of control, and some want me to do more work than what they do,” said Tappis.  “However they want me to work, I work.  I can do as little as they want me to do, or as much.  If that means me doing more work than you, that’s fine.  I ask them if they want me to call the candidate or do they want me to call the candidate, things of that nature.”

Tappis has had two stints in the Network, the most recent of which began in 2003.  Since that time, he has made a number of placements with Bob Small of Carroll Technology Services, Inc.;  Philip Bartfield of Bartfield Search, Inc.;  Ilissa Suss Manes of Contract Placement Associates;  Dan Simmons of Continental Search & Outplacement, Inc.;  and Janet Miller of Computer Management, Inc..

Tappis—along with the recruiters listed above—is also a member of the Maryland Regional Core Group, one of the first such groups to form within Top Echelon Network.  The group consists of Preferred Member firm owners from Maryland, Virginia, and the Washington, D.C.-area.

“The members of this Core Group work a similar market and have candidates in a similar geography,” said Tappis.  “It’s as much of a benefit in terms of relationship building as it is from a business standpoint.  Just getting to know each other has helped us to make more placements.”

Tappis specializes in Information Technology at all levels, including software developers, architects, analysts, and database candidates.  According to Tappis, he’s witnesses an increase in activity and job orders since the first of the year.

“This is my third recession,” said Tappis, who’s been in the recruiting professions since 1984.  “I would say that my business was down last year, but only slightly.  In the last year or two, companies have spent very little on IT.    Companies can only go so long without spending in those areas.  It seems like IT is a little bit ahead of the curve, and the tech sector is improving.  I would definitely say that the worst is behind us.”

According to Tappis, he plans to continue leveraging his Network resources, especially his Trading Partner relationships, in order to make more split placements.  True to his philosophy, he’ll provide whatever his Trading Partners need, depending upon the circumstances involved.

“I’m both an importer and an exporter,” said Tappis.  “When my clients haven’t been hiring, I tend to do more exporting and try to work on the job orders of others.  When my clients are hiring, I have plenty of recruiters I can tap for candidates.  Right now, I’ve seen an uptick in leads from my clients, so I’m doing a combination of both.”

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