Take the holiday. But keep the pipeline pumping for 2017!

Take the holiday. But keep the pipeline pumping for 2017!

Most of us will have some kind of break in the next month or so. Christmas, New Year, summer holidays, Chinese New Year. You, your clients and your candidates are going to have some well-deserved downtime.

But what about the cost? We won’t bill while we are on the beach, or in the pub. And what’s more, when we get back to the desk, everything will be stone-cold. No activity, no momentum. What a task to crank up the action again! It could take weeks. Which takes us into February. Then we need to transact it, and get offers, and have start-dates confirmed. When? In March? April?

Is your break going to cost you a whole quarter? Maybe your job?

We know, or should know, that it is a pipeline of key activities that drives success. Any fall-off in that pipeline, and a rapid decline in your placements and therefore revenue, is as predictable as night following day.

The activities that need to fill up your ‘pipeline’ could include a wide variety of things, but typically you need to meet quality talent, and meet face-to-face with clients. Those are the metrics that drive the ultimate match. Think about it in the simplest way for a moment. If you are running a perm desk, you only earn money;

  • If people get hired.
  • And people only get hired if people get interviewed – by the client.
  • And client/candidate interviews only happen if qualified job orders are secured.
  • And qualified job orders typically result from face to face meetings.
  • In addition, people get hired only if they accept job offers.
  • And job offers come to quality, qualified talent.
  • And of course, qualified talent are typically the result of a thorough interview with the recruiter.

So if you believe the bullet points above, you must maintain a pipeline of consistent activity or the desired end result (placements, fees, and therefore fun and money) will not eventuate.

But it does not have to be so.

Here is a simple strategy to keep that pipeline healthy – even if you do go away.

10 days out from your holiday starting, you set yourself a few simple goals.

“Before I leave on holiday I will have arranged…”

  • 10 sales visits for the first 10 days after I get back.
  • 10 talent interviews for the first 10 days after I get back.

That’s it. And you make it happen.

Actually, it’s a lot easier calling clients and prospects and arranging a meeting for 3 0r 4 weeks time. It can be done quite quickly.

Same with talent.

Be honest. “I will be away for a couple of weeks. But as soon as I get back lets get your situation moving. I will see you in two weeks time. How about 10 am on Tuesday the 12th January?”

Sure, some meetings will be cancelled. But here is the point…

Instead of getting back to a dead desk, and weeks of grinding the activity wheel, and maybe months before the $ flow, you hit the ground running.

You get back from holiday and you have no orders to work on, but you have 2 client meetings on day one. And another the next day. And two more the day after that. Plus you are seeing fresh candidates immediately.

By the end of the week after your break, you are in full swing. Feeling busy, being busy.

Yes you can take a holiday and be a successful recruiter. But make sure a 2-week holiday costs you two weeks of down time.

Not six weeks.


Buy yourself, and your staff, the Christmas present that keeps on giving.



About Greg Savage

Over a career spanning thirty years, Greg Savage has established himself as a global recruitment leader. Greg is a regular keynote speaker at staffing and recruitment conferences around the world.

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3 Responses to Take the holiday. But keep the pipeline pumping for 2017!

  1. Neil Bolton December 6, 2016 at 2:48 pm #

    Absolutely brilliant Greg. I’d add one thing to your post:

    Who says that this is a quiet period? In my experience the Christmas period is when you can really get things done. If you call a client or a candidate, and they answer and are prepared to talk – well, they’re the serious ones, they are the ones that don’t hive off at Christmas time – they are the ones that know that “the quiet period” is only true if you believe it.

    Yes, there are a lot of phone numbers that you call between Christmas and New Year that don’t get answered – the vast majority. But those that answer – they’re brilliant.

  2. Alan Allebone December 9, 2016 at 4:31 pm #

    I have this sorted and got the appointments all set for when I return from leave.
    lets see Greg if it works this year.



  3. Business Coach Adelaide December 28, 2016 at 9:36 am #

    No doubt – the pipeline is so important and so is time off. Finding a balance is key

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