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Mastering the Mundane

Talent and potential mean nothing if you can’t consistently do the boring things when you don’t feel like doing them. -Shane Parrish

I read that quote this week, and it resonated. Our business is LOADED with boring activities:

  • Reviewing resumes from unqualified job post responses
  • Leaving a million voicemail messages
  • Sending the same emails over and over
  • Digging through results for cold sourcing

None of those things are fun, most are tedious and mundane, but all are crucial to our success. If I don’t prioritize job postings and active candidates, I’m leaving money on the table. If I don’t make cold calls, I’m leaving money on the table. If I’m not prospecting, I’m leaving money on the table. No cold sourcing? Less placed candidates and yep, I’m leaving money on the table.

Jason and I discussed the value of dealing with the mundane, which he hates. This struck me…

You’re not always racing the car, the real money is in managing the track. -Jason Thibeault

What steps can we take to learn to master the mundane? There are several, but here are my top 3:

  1. Embrace routine. Mundane tasks often become automatic over time, allowing you to perform them with minimal effort. No surprise I’d recommend a daily or weekly schedule including all your repetitive tasks. The more consistently you do these tasks, the easier they’ll be for you.
  2. Mindset matters. Reframe the way you approach tedious work. Instead of seeing them as chores, view them as essential building blocks to your success. Each resume reviewed is a potential match, each cold call is a step closer to a placement, and each email sent can be the first step of a new deal. Get excited about what these activities can lead to and they’ll be easier to accomplish.
  3. Reward yourself. Someone  in Group Coaching has a wonderful point system for all work and personal related tasks. She gives herself points for sendouts, preps, cold outreach, and even those days she can avoid chocolate and pringles. Once she has 750 points, she takes a day off. You don’t need to have a full spreadsheet, but you do need a reward system. Maybe a favorite TV show, a long bath, or a cocktail. Whatever works for you, reward yourself for getting through the boring work. 

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Tricia Tamkin, headhunter, advisor, coach, and gladiator. Tricia has spoken at over 50 recruiting events, been quoted in multiple national publications, and her name is often dropped in groups as the solution to any recruiters’ challenges. She brings over 30 years of deep recruiting experience and offers counsel in a way which is perspective changing and entertaining.

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