I will begin with a very simple premise: the basis of any good relationship is trust.
If you do not trust your recruiter and he does not trust you, then it is unlikely that you will have a successful relationship. Thus, the first advantage of disclosure is that you establish and begin to build trust with your recruiter. Conversely, if you are not straightforward with your recruiter, then your relationship will be built upon a very unstable foundation.
Worst Case Scenario
I can tell you that as a recruiter it is very important to me that candidates are honest with me. This is not only because I want us to trust each other, but also because I do not want us to be blindsided at any point during the process.
I have been a recruiter for a number of years, and I have helped candidates navigate a wide variety of difficult and challenging situations. You may feel that you are unique, but I can assure you that you are not! If I understand your situation - the good, the bad, and quite possibly the ugly - then you can benefit from my experience, and together we can prepare for an assortment of scenarios, including the worst-case scenario.
On the other hand, if I do not know all the facts, then you are depriving yourself of the benefits of my experience and putting both of us in a very vulnerable and potentially embarrassing position.
Are You Able to Obtain References?
The first question I ask a candidate is why were you laid off from your firm?
Were you laid off for any particular cause? Or were you laid off because your group did not have enough work to keep you busy? If it is the latter situation, then I can explain your situation to potential employers and assure them that you will be able to provide outstanding references.
Excellent references allay potential employers' concerns, and can often trump the fact that you were laid off by your firm.
If you were laid off for a particular cause and cannot obtain references (or your references will be lukewarm at best), then your situation becomes more difficult. However, I still believe that full disclosure is critical, because in the end the potential new employer will ask for references.
If we have "framed" your situation from the outset (and thereby been in control of the process), then we may be able to overcome this problem. Conversely, if, at the end of the process, the potential new employer is surprised by the fact that you cannot obtain references, then they will feel that they have been manipulated; and it is highly unlikely that you will receive an offer.
It is important to remember that you can obtain references from other sources (e.g. other employers, professors, judges, and etcetera). By "framing" your situation, we can make potential new employers understand that your situation with your current employer is an aberration, not the norm, in your professional life.
There is no question that being laid off is difficult. It is a blow to your ego, and creates financial insecurity. When you have a damaged ego and are worried about your finances, your actions may be dictated by anger and fear.
See the Top 32 Reasons Attorneys Lose Their Jobs Inside of Law Firms to learn some of the most common reasons attorneys are fired or let go from law firms.
Decisions based upon these highly volatile emotions are unlikely to be sound decisions; and it is here that a good recruiter can guide you through the process. Trust and candor are imperative, as they will allow you and your recruiter to successfully navigate all the twists and turns of your search process. It may be a cliché, but honesty really is the best policy!
See the following articles for more information:
- What Characteristics Should I Look for in a Legal Recruiter?
- Interview yourself first - questions to ask before starting your lateral search
- How to Choose a Good Attorney Recruiter
- Why You Should Be Talking to a Legal Recruiter Right Now
- Choosing a Legal Recruiter
- Your Legal Career as a Small Business
- Should I Use a Legal Recruiter? Top 10 Reasons to Use a Legal Recruiter
- How to Select the Best Legal Recruiter and Maximize the Effectiveness of Working with One
- What makes a world class recruiter
- 10 Things That Most Legal Recruiters Will Not Tell You
Learn the top 10 reasons to become a legal recruiter in this related article.
|BCG Attorney Search is looking for driven recruiters to join our team. BCG Attorney Search covers the entire United States, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. We offer first-rate training and coaching, pay top of market commissions, pay our recruiters as employees and not independent contractors, and offer medical insurance and other benefits. Additionally, BCG is the best known brand in the industry and is part of a 200+ employee legal employment company. We offer a supportive cooperative atmosphere and provide you with everything you need to be the most effective recruiter possible (continually updated internal job database, massive advertising support, incredible back office support, and many other perks designed to ensure you match every possible candidate with every available position).|