How To Become A Headhunter
Career Video: Headhunter
Do you have a knack for reading people? Would you like to build a career by using your interpersonal intelligence and perceptive talents? Are you interested in investigative projects, helping clients find employees that meet their exact needs? Does your knowledge of business and administration pair well with your social aptitude? If you think that you have what it takes to locate and provide executive-level employees to various organizations, then you most likely should choose a career as a headhunter.
Why Become A Headhunter
Headhunters are especially adept at locating, vetting, and providing potential personnel to clients of various needs. Also known as executive recruiters or human resource specialists, headhunters offer an invaluable service to organizations of all sizes. Most often, headhunters are known for locating executives to work for larger corporations and firms.
Their typical work consists of being a point person for a business, learning about the searchers’ desires, locating candidates, screening and interviewing potential matches, and selecting employees who fit their clients’ needs.
Not only do headhunters have to be good judges of character, but they must also possess a number of interpersonal skills that will help them to pair employers with suitable employees:
- Communication skills
- Critical thinking skills
- Customer service oriented
- Understanding of human traits
Headhunter Work Environment
Headhunters work in any sort of environment necessary to conduct their job. They attend meetings with their clients in offices, boardrooms, or via electronic conversations. They work in an office of their own, at their place of employment or at their homes, to locate and vet potential candidates. They travel to various locations—offices, restaurants, and coffee shops—to conduct interviews.
Their main method of locating potential candidates is through networking, advertising, and researching. Internet sites, such as LinkedIn, provide an invaluable tool for headhunters, as well as trade association directories.
Hours may be non-typical of a regular business day. Length of time spent on work depends on many factors, including a company’s needs, candidate pool, and location.
Headhunters are paid based on a percentage of the hired candidate’s first-year salary, so a headhunter’s salary depends upon the level of client for which he or she works. Other factors must be taken into consideration when assessing the possible salary of a headhunter: location, agreements (contingency vs. retainer), size of company, experience, and educational training. Nonetheless, the median annual salary for a headhunter is $87,230, ranging from $73,454 to $102,451.
Headhunter Career Outlook
The career outlook for headhunters is good; as the job market improves, so does the “hunting ground” for headhunters. First, when people become more comfortable in the market, they become more flexible with changing jobs and companies. Second, companies may have more sustainable funds to use to hire higher-level executives. In addition to these aspects, many younger business graduates are entering the workforce. While these individuals may not be executive-ready, they are numerous and competent.
Although headhunting skills require specific talents to be successful, most companies seek headhunters with at least a bachelor’s degree.
Step 1: Obtain a bachelor’s degree. Some companies will not require an undergraduate degree, but the odds of finding a well-paying job without one are slim. Interested candidates should choose a degree depending on the level of their interests. For example, those seeking more prestigious employment should obtain a bachelor’s degree in business, finance, administration, or accounting. It is important to take courses in English language arts, communication, psychology, and sociology. Degrees in human resources management, leadership, communication, and sociology may be beneficial to obtain. It is important to specialize and take courses that will be relevant to the field.