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Early Bird Registration for the upcoming Top Echelon Network Fall Conference ends on Friday! THIS Friday!

That means you have less than a week to take advantage of the discounted Early Bird pricing for the conference, which is just $235 per person. (And if you’re a new Network member, the price is even lower than that. Contact me for more details.)

As I’ve mentioned before in previous blog posts, Scott Love of The Attorney Search Group is the main speaker for this year’s Fall Conference. In addition, this year’s Fall Conference is scheduled for Tuesday, October 18, and Wednesday, October 19. The site of the conference is the Sheraton O’Hare Suites (formerly the Sheraton Gateway Suites).

Our room rate with the Sheraton O’Hare Suites is $189 per night. That rate is good for Top Echelon Network members attending the conference for the dates of Monday, October 17, through Wednesday, October 19.

To make hotel reservations at the Sheraton O’Hare Suites, call 1.847.699.6300. Be sure to reference the “Top Echelon conference” and its dates when you make the reservation. Please note there are a limited number of rooms available at that rate for our group, and they will be given out on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Sheraton O’Hare Suites is located near the Chicago O’Hare Airport. A courtesy shuttle will be available for your transportation. Also keep in mind that you do not have to stay at the Sheraton O’Hare Suites. You also have the option of staying at any hotel of your choice and traveling to the Sheraton.

But forget about all of that for just a minute. There are already over 30 recruiters signed up for the conference, and we expect quite a few more to register before the Early Bird Registration period ends. Networking is the cornerstone for our conferences and conventions. This is the #1 reason we get Network members together in one place—to exchange hot job orders and candidates and make more placements.

You can see who has already registered in the Members’ Area. You can access the conference links, including registration, on the left-hand side of the page.

We want to see YOU among those who are registered for the Fall Conference. Come to Chicago, meet your split partners, meet new split partners, and make more placements!

“FARM fun” is just one week from today! (In case you didn’t read the headline to this blog post.)

What am I talking about? “Top Echelon Networking on the FARM,” of course. This is the annual networking event hosted by Network members Maria Hemminger and Joanna Spaun of MJ Recruiters, LLC.

The event is scheduled for Wednesday, August 17, and we have a list of the recruiters—and other people—who have committed to be in attendance:

Todd Bossler, Debbie Fledderjohann, and Casey Stevens of Top Echelon
Maria Hemminger, Joanna Spaun, and Lisa Reinbolt of MJ Recruiters, LLC
Ryan Klusch, Michael Lesch, and Molly Carver of Alliance Technical Services
Bob Gabor of The Gabor Group
Harvey Lipton of The Centrus Group
Suzanne Griffith of Ives & Associates, Inc.
Dan Funke of Flexible Recruiting
David M. Sgro and David J. Sgro of True North Consultants
Chris Ramsay of Corporate Resources
Bill Kubena of Kubena & Associates
Les Clem and Nubia of The People Place
Trey Cameron of the Cameron Craig Group
Pam Petitpren, Jim Petitpren, Dan Trudeau, Lynda Mammel, and Neil Forch of The PRA Group
Dave Wick of Career Center of Cincinnati
Jarad Swint of Acloche Executive Search
Kerry Boehner of KOB Solutions
Pat McGue of Mackie Executive Search

“FARM fun” facts

Yes, we published details regarding “Top Echelon Networking on the FARM” in the recent past, but I realize that you may have been napping at the time. So, for posterity’s sake, below are the “FARM fun” facts. (Identities have been revealed to point out the guilty.)

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EVENT: “Top Echelon Networking on the FARM”

HOSTS: Maria Hemminger and Joanna Spaun of MJ Recruiters, LLC

DATE: Wednesday, August 17

ADDRESS: The Hemminger Farm, 3144 W. U.S. 224, Tiffin, OH  44883

DESCRIPTION: Join MJ Recruiters for the Top Echelon networking event of the summer at The Hemminger Farm in Tiffin. Top Echelon Network members are invited to network, meet new recruiters, and communicate with Top Echelon officials. This will be the fifth such event at The Hemminger Farm.


  • Share HOT jobs and HOT candidates.
  • MJ Recruiters will provide grilled hamburgers and bratwurst patties for everyone to enjoy. Drinks will also be supplied (water, pop, and beer).
  • Please bring a side dish to share, as well as a camp chair.
  • This is a casual, relaxing, informal day. Kayaking, swimming, fishing, sand volleyball, and corn hole will be available!
  • Top Echelon Contracting President Debbie Fledderjohann will be on hand to answer any and all questions regarding how to make contract placements.
  • Design and Support Manager Todd Bossler will also be on hand to answer “geek questions” about the Network and Big Biller software.

WHEN TO ARRIVE: According to Maria, if you’d like to arrive the night before (Tuesday, August 16), she recommends two hotels. They are the Holiday Inn Express (419.443.5100) and the Hampton Inn (419.443.5300). However, these hotels fill up quickly, so book your rooms soon! And do NOT book anywhere else in Tiffin without talking to Maria first. If you’re planning to arrive the night before, let Maria know. She’s planning a dinner event for those who arrive early.

RSVP/QUESTIONS: Email or call 419.443.1840.

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Click here to view photos from previous “Networking on the FARM” events.

Make plans to join us next week for more “FARM fun”!

A few weeks ago, we put long-time Top Echelon Network member Steve Kohn in the recruiter spotlight. This week, we’re doing it again . . . this time with long-time Network member Mark London of Command Consultants, Inc.

There are a number of reasons that we’re putting Mark in the recruiter spotlight. They include the following:

  • He’s celebrating his 26th anniversary as a Network member this month.
  • He’s made 75 Network placements since joining Top Echelon on August 22, 1990.
  • He is beloved by his split partners in TE (see below).
  • He believes in the value of split placements.
  • He’s celebrating his 35th year in the recruiting profession this year.

Are there more reasons than these? Of course there are!

Mark has also attended numerous Top Echelon conferences and conventions down through the years. He’s a staunch believer in the power of fact-to-face networking, and that belief has helped to fuel his placement success in TE.

Congratulations to Mark London—for his longevity in the profession, for his tenure in Top Echelon, and for being in the recruiter spotlight this week!

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Diane Rothong of Worksource 2000, Inc.

Diane Rothong

Mark London of Command Consultants, Inc.

Mark London

“Mark London is a pleasure to work with. He schmoozes and collaborates and was determined to present the precise candidate my client was looking for. I look forwrd to making another placement with him soon!”

Submitted by Diane Rothong of Worksource 2000, Inc. regarding her Network split placement with Mark London of Command Consultants, Inc.


Fee Percentage—25%

(Editor’s note: This is the first Network split placement that Rothong and London have made together in Top Echelon.)

You know the prevailing mentality in today’s society: “Everybody’s a winner.” No . . . they’re not. If everybody is a winner, then nobody is a winner. C’mon, give me a break. That being said, we have the monthly award winners in Top Echelon Network for the month of July.

Even that is a misnomer, mainly because there was just one overall winner: Trey Cameron of the Cameron Craig Group, who has won this award for the past 3,142 months in a row. (An exaggeration, to be sure, but not by much.)

Winners by degrees

Anyway, we have not just Trey, but also the other top four recruiters in Top Echelon Network for the month of July. They’ve been ranked by the number of split placements they made during the month, in addition to the amount of cash-in dollars they earned as a result of those split placements.

Are all five of these recruiters winners? In terms of making split placements, of course they are! To us here at Top Echelon, all recruiters who make split placements are winners.

But in terms of the Recruiter of the Month Award, no. There’s only one winner. That’s Trey. However, we do have some lovely parting gifts, like tidy placement fee totals. The money does spend the same.

So congratulations to Trey, the winner of this month’s award, and the other four recruiters listed below—split placement winners all!

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Recruiters of the Month:

1st Place: Trey Cameron
Agency: Cameron Craig Group
Placements: 12
Commission: $102,248

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2nd Place: Steve Kohn
Agency: Affinity Executive Search
Placements: 7
Commission: $50,963

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3rd Place: Melissa Truax
Agency: Premier Health Careers, Inc./Premier Paths
Placements: 3
Commission: $25,438

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4th Place: Maria Hemminger
Agency: MJ Recruiters, LLC
Placements: 3
Commission: $18,680

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5th Place: Kerry Boehner
Agency: KOB Solutions, Inc.
Placements: 2
Commission: $20,022

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If YOU are looking to make more placements with your Top Echelon Network membership, contact Director of Network Operations Drea Codispoti, CPC/CERS at 330.455.1433, x156.

If you are a recruiter, you’re quite familiar with the phrase “cultural fit,” but in most cases it’s coming from a client who wants to make sure a new hire will fit in with the existing team.  But cultural fit is an important requirement for job candidates, too, especially for Millennials.

A article illustrates this through a story about a worker they call “John.”

A cultural fit closes candidates

At a time when many young college graduates were struggling to find work, a Fortune 500 company for which John had interned created a full-time position just for him.  He was getting great experience and making decent money.  But he was only partially satisfied.  Why?

In short, because he had no friends at work.  As the youngest employee, he had little in common with his co-workers, and even if he did, he never got the chance to discuss it with them because they were frequently traveling and worked through lunches.

It may seem silly to some to leave a good job at an established, successful company because the social experience is less than satisfying, but John did just that.  His new employer offered co-workers in his age range and a more “lively atmosphere.”

There are two take-aways from this story. These two important aspects of ensuring a cultural fit are as follows:

#1—Don’t underestimate the importance of a cultural fit to the employee.

This is especially vital if you are placing Millennials.  They want to have fun at work.  They want to make a difference.  They are not going to be happy sitting “chained to a desk” from 9-5.  They need to be acknowledged and rewarded, and they need to feel a connection with their co-workers.  If you place them in an environment that does not fulfill those needs, they likely won’t stick around for long.

#2—You have the ability to ensure a cultural fit for BOTH the client and the candidate.

You can allow them to try each other out through a contract-to-direct arrangement.  This allows the client to evaluate whether the candidate’s work ethic and values match that of the company, and it gives the candidate the opportunity to see if this is a place at which they would really enjoy working.

Contract-to-direct provides an advantage to recruiters, as well.  On top of the money you make for each hour the candidate works while on contract, you can also earn a nice conversion fee.  Who says you can’t please everyone?