The Recruiter’s 20 Mile March

The Recruiter’s 20 Mile March

So you are nearing the end of January, you’ve set out some big goals for your recruitment business. Do you know what you have to do each day/week/month to achieve them? More to the point, are you doing it?

To reach greatness you must focus on consistent and long-term personal performance. In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins taught us that,

“Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice, and discipline.”


What has the South Pole got to do with Recruitment?

The famous South Pole race of 1911 is the perfect example to illustrate the message of this post. Business writers and speakers often reference this powerful true story of two explorers, Amundsen and Scott, who lead separate teams on an expedition to race to the South Pole. The journey there and back was roughly 1400 miles which is equivalent to a round-trip from New York City to Chicago.

Scott vs Amundsen

While both teams would be travelling the same distance as each other through extremely harsh weather conditions, each team took an entirely different approach to the journey.


Scott’s team would walk as far as possible on the good weather days and then rest up on the bad days to conserve energy.


Conversely Amundsen’s team followed to a strict regimen of consistent progress by walking 20 miles every day no matter what the weather. While on good days Amundsen’s team were very capable of walking further, Amundsen was adamant that they walk no more than 20 miles each day to conserve energy.


Which one succeeded?


The team that took consistent action.


By taking consistent action every day with a 20 mile march rather than bursts of inconsistent action, they made it to the South Pole and back on schedule. Scott’s team, who only travelled on good days, took 34 days longer than Amundsen and lost 5 men on the return journey.


Back to Recruitment

In the executive recruiting world there is so much the Recruiter can do yet so much they can easily forget as well. The foundations of consistently executing an optimal process and best practices will often be the decider of success at the end of the assignment, month and year. These are the controllables, the 1001 things you have to consistently do and can’t afford to forget.

I felt this quote from Leadership writer John C. Maxwell was very fitting:

“You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” 


So what’s your “recruiting” 20 mile march and how do you stick to it?


Here are some additional resources to help:


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