Are You Willing to Take a Risk as a Recruiter?

(Editor’s note: the following article is by industry trainer and speaker Barb Bruno, CPC/CTS of Good as Gold Training. Barb has served as a keynote speaker at recruiter networking events like the Top Echelon National Convention and Fall Conference multiple times. She has also presented webinars for the Top Echelon Recruiter Coaching Series. Barb is a trusted voice in the recruiting and staffing industry, as well as a valuable contributor to the resources that Top Echelon provides.)

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Risk-taking is a critical element of leadership and essential for creating a successful career and being an effective leader. It is important for you to be comfortable with risk-taking. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • How comfortable are you with risk-taking on a scale from 1-10?
  • Do you hear a tiny voice nagging you about setting more aggressive goals?
  • Have you ever been criticized for not making bolder decisions or taking bolder actions?
  • Have you procrastinated on an idea, only to have your competition do it first?
  • Do you convince yourself that it’s too risky to make changes?

Build up your recruiting risk muscles!

If you answered yes to any of these questions or rated your risk-taking ability under a seven, you need to exercise your risk-taking muscles.

We all know that the more we exercise, the stronger we get. The stronger we get, the more comfortable we become exercising. As you build your risk muscles, you’ll find yourself getting into a cycle in which your sense of self-confidence and power will be continually expanding.

Taking risks, though, doesn’t mean making decisions without thinking about consequences. Taking calculated risks and risky behavior are two different actions.

We all operate within a comfort zone that provides us with a sense of security and safety. However, in order to grow, increase sales, and develop your leadership skills, you need to move out of that comfort zone and into a learning zone. This means you must learn to be comfortable operating outside of your comfort zone.

However, you will also need to understand how far you can stretch yourself without pulling a muscle, without setting yourself up to fail. Create guidelines for creatively stretching yourself on a continual basis, you will be able to increase your skill sets, build your self-confidence, and improve your risk-taking abilities.

Questions for self-awareness

These questions will help you to assess risks and increase your level of self-awareness:

  • What are you afraid of?
  • If you peel back all the layers of excuses you give yourself for not taking a risk, what is the underlying fear that’s keeping you from moving forward?
  • What is the worst-case scenario that can occur as a result of taking a particular risk?
  • What are the possible lost opportunities?
  • What opportunity might you miss that will be very hard for you to recapture if you don’t take a particular risk?
  • What do you discover when you compare the worst-case scenario with the most significant lost opportunity?
  • What are the first small steps that you can begin to take that will move you forward through your fear?
  • What kind of information will help you to make educated assessments about the risk you are considering?
  • Who are the knowledgeable people you can call on for advice?
  • Who are the people who might try to hinder you because of their own needs or fears?
  • What can you do to protect yourself from being influenced by them?
  • What is your intuition telling you about this particular risk?
  • What other viewpoints can you apply to assess the risk from a variety of perspectives?
  • What attitudes and beliefs might be blocking you from adopting any of these different perspectives?

Once you become comfortable with risk-taking, you will enjoy a higher level of success!

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