Which of these two acronyms describe the culture of your recruitment business?

Which of these two acronyms describe the culture of your recruitment business?

Acronyms and abbreviations have been used to varying degrees for hundreds of years, however they didn’t really become commonplace in the English language until the 1940’s. Since then we have seen a proliferation of acronyms across all manner of industries. You can probably think of several widely used business abbreviations off the top of your head right now…does K.I.S.S ring a bell?

In the spirit of K.I.S.S, I have a couple of simple new additions for your abbreviation library. Two weeks ago my day started with a breakfast meeting where I heard a couple of short acronyms that caught my attention.

A fellow entrepreneur I was meeting with had just returned from a 3 day course with Brad Sugars, the Australian Business Coach. On recounting a few of his key take-aways from the course, my friend shared with us two simple little acronyms that resonated with me, and I immediately noted them down so I could refer back to them.

Now that I’m looking over those notes again I’d like to share these little acronyms with all of you fine recruitment business owners, directors and managers out there.


A Question Of Culture

You may have seen my post in February titled “Why Accountability in Recruitment is All or Nothing” where I referenced Greg Bustin’s research on the subject. He concluded that “culture is a significant predictor of your future performance.”


So what does the culture of your recruitment business look like? Does it take the shape of a ‘B.E.D’ or an ‘O.A.R’?

OK strange question I know, but bear with me a moment longer, here’s the meaning of each:

B lame
E xcuses
D enial

O wnership
A ccountability
R esponsibility


These were both new to me. Although simple, they struck a chord because I could see how these characteristics might describe how recruiters show up depending on circumstances, and on the culture they are part of. These 3 letter acronyms highlight key facets that sit behind a Recruiter’s attitude and subsequently guide the way they conduct themselves, consciously or subconsciously. Ultimately, this will lead to the results they get.

If a search falls through in the final stages, costing the fee, how will the consultant react? Blame the client, the candidate, or some other factor? And how will the Director/Owner of the firm react? Blame the consultant, be in denial about the situation, or take responsibility for how the consultant had been trained and how they conducted the search?

As a Recruitment Business Owner you will know that every year will have it’s share of peaks and troughs. However the length of time (and frequency) spent in each area will have a lot to do with the attitude of the individuals and the culture they are part of.

It reminds me of the well known saying that ‘life is 10% about what happens and 90% how you respond’. That 90% is where you have the choice. You can blame external forces or other people, make excuses to justify the outcome in your mind, and even carry on in denial. On the other hand you can choose to take ownership of the situation, ensure accountability is consistently present and take 100% responsibility for the outcomes.

Can you imagine if every recruiter followed the principles of “O.A.R”?


I look forward to hearing any thoughts on these two different culture characteristics.

How do you set the tone for a high performance culture in your recruitment business?

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