Measuring Success

My name is Richard Lesser and I am a Liverpool fan. There I’ve said it. For those still reading the blog please bear with me, this is my first time.

With Liverpool breaking their highest ever premier league points total on Saturday night with 94 points and 1 game still to play it left me considering how we should measure success in the workplace.

94 points is the joint 4th highest premier league point total and a number that would have secured them the premier league title in 20 out of 23 seasons. It is more points than Arsenal’s much lauded invincibles and the highest points haul of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United teams. There is still 1 game to play but the reality is that they will finish runners-up to Manchester City if they take maximum points in their remaining fixture. The legendary Bill Shankly once said “If you are first you are first. If you are second you are nothing.”  

So, on that basis Liverpool should look back on this season as a failure? A season where they have lost only 1 game, conceded the fewest goals, kept the most clean sheets and gone toe to toe with Manchester City.

Sporting success and business are often compared and have been widely documented and analysed. Success will mean very different things to certain organisations and industries. For the purpose of this blog I would like to put down my thoughts on measuring success as a recruitment professional.

I have worked at various recruitment organisations in the past and success is usually measured in some of the following ways;

-        Revenue (monthly, quarterly and annual billings)

-        Number of placements

-        Activity/Key performance indicators (Number of CV’s sent out, interviews, meetings etc)

-        Breaking into new markets/clients

All the above are extremely valid methods of measuring success but should we focus only on these or are we missing something? The grey areas...  Did I act with integrity and honesty with my clients, candidates and colleagues? Did I manage to further cement relationships with clients and candidates? Would my clients and candidates recommend me and work with me again? Have I genuinely helped further the careers of the professionals I work with?

Whilst it is easy to measure the success of the tangible i.e. did we hit revenue target? It is less easy to measure the intangible data, but, in my opinion, they are equally as important. Achieving longevity in this business requires not only the ability to make a placement but also the need to have the integrity it takes to become a trusted advisor to your clients, candidates and colleagues.

Whilst we are all trying to achieve success, it is important to remember that the journey we are on to do so should be celebrated and remembered.

Richard Lesser

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