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The Resilient Recruiter

Aug 11, 2021

Is it really possible to work less and make more? It seems counter-intuitive and the majority of big billers I know advocate the “hustle and grind” approach. But what if you could work smarter rather than harder?  

My special guest, Michelle Parchman, has been doing this for years - billing half a million dollars per annum by working 2 to 3 hours a day. Like me, you will find her thought process revolutionary! Listening to our conversation may move you to revisit your way of working, your values and how you define success.

Michelle is originally a CPA and began her public accounting career in auditing with Anderson in Dallas. After 17 years in Big Four public accounting plus seven years with the largest executive search firm in San Antonio, she founded Parchman and Parchman Executive Search in 2009, specializing in accounting, finance, tax, legal and C-level searches. Parchman and Parchman was named by Forbes as one of America’s best recruiting firms and Michelle has been described as one of San Antonio’s Most Inspiring and Influential Women. She is also a Board Director for the Pinnacle Society, the premier consortium of 80 leading recruiters in North America.

Episode Outline and Highlights

  • [2:37] Transition from accounting to executive search - Michelle shares her story.
  • [9:50] Putting processes and systems in place to make things happen - what to learn from Indy Race’s refuelling methods. 
  • [12:00] How to accomplish billing half a million and work in less than 15 hours a week - four solid takeaways.
  • [16:54] Why is Michelle working only two to three hours a day? Hear her revolutionary insight.
  • [22:01] Best practices on planning and prioritization - when to do it, how to do it, and thought process.
  • [30:09] Network power and why your network can be your bank account.
  • [34:22] Advice on becoming super efficient.
  • [43:31] How to become a master in a balanced life.
  • [51:00] Why Michelle works exclusively with clients.

From Public Accounting to Executive Search

Michelle revealed her journey and transition from being a public accountant for 17 years to becoming an owner of an executive search business. If you are just starting your career as a recruiter, you will definitely relate to her story. It was not all rainbows and butterflies, as she also relayed how it was challenging for her at the outset. The recruitment firm she initially worked for did not fully fit with her way of working, which led her to create systems and processes. “It was very challenging in the first six months, I didn’t think that I was going to like it, I didn’t think I was going to succeed, but once I was able to kind of roll up my sleeves and lay out processes like ‘this is how we are going to strategize to get new clients’… It was great!”

With her current success, what were really her daily thoughts during the painstaking first six months? “I think I typically persevere and I want to succeed and I am motivated. I’m just not willing to not let this work.” Indeed, an inspiring story for our new recruiters out there, or anyone facing adversity and overwhelm.

Bill Half Million and Work Less Than 15 Hours a Week

Is it possible to hit half a million dollars in billings by working only 15 hours a week? “It is 100 percent possible, and I have been doing it for years and years,” Michelle confirmed. The foundation is her thought process.  She evaluates and prioritizes all her work activities based on ROI (return on investment). “It is because I look at everything as ROI. So every single thing I do, I think in my head, what is the return on my investment? For me it’s time.  Time and then money. I try to make sure that everything I do is going to take me the least amount of time and give me the highest amount of money.”

Some of my key takeaways of our conversation:

  • Thinking about the ROI - not just for money but for your time.
  • “Working closest to the money.”
  • Coming up with the ten most important things to do each day - ranked .
  • Know your values (what’s most important to you) and prioritize accordingly.

The Power of Network

Another key factor for success that Michelle revealed in our conversation was her network. She said, “I just feel blessed in the sense that I know really smart people.” Her network is based on two foundational principles - relationship building and ethics. Ethics plays a major role when selecting her network. Also knowing that the people she surrounds herself with are so trusted and credentialed, it makes her job really easy when she gets referrals because she knows that they would only refer her people who also have the same level of ethics and professionalism. 

Our Sponsors

This podcast is proudly sponsored by i-intro®. 

i-intro® is an end-to-end retained recruitment platform. Our technology and methodology allows recruiters to differentiate themselves from the competition, win more retained business, bigger fees and increase their billings. Be sure to mention Mark Whitby or The Resilient Recruiter for a 25% discount. Book your free, no obligation consultation here: 

Michelle Parchman Bio and Contact Info

Michelle is a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Personnel Consultant. She graduated with distinction from Oklahoma University with a BBA, concentration in accounting. Michelle began her public accounting career in auditing with Andersen in Dallas. During her 17-year successful tenure with Andersen, Michelle worked in Audit, Tax, Business Development, and Recruiting.

Michelle has received numerous awards and recognition:

  • Inspiring Woman – San Antonio’s Most Successful Women
  • Forbes recognition for America’s Best Recruiting Firm (selected by Peers
  • and HR).
  • Top Permanent Placement Firm in San Antonio, San Antonio Business Journal, 2011, and every year thereafter.
  • Ranked as Top 25 Texas Recruiter, Texas Association of Personnel Consultants, 2004, and every year beyond, until the Association ceased.
  • Ranked as the #10 Recruiter in Texas, multiple years
  • Rookie of the Year, Texas Association of Personnel Consultants, 2004
  • #1 Recruiter, San Antonio Association of Personnel Consultants, 2004 and every year beyond, until the Association ceased.
  • Rookie of the Year, San Antonio Association of Personnel Consultants Consultant of the Year, largest search firm in San Antonio, (every year employed)

In 2009, Michelle founded Parchman + Parchman, Executive Search Experts, a highly specialized, niche recruiting firm specializing in Accounting, Finance, Tax, Legal, and C-Level searches. The primary function of the firm is to locate and present the best-qualified talent the current market has to offer. Michelle brings more than 20 years collective experience in the recruitment and placement of qualified professionals. Michelle is also Current Board of Director for The Pinnacle Society, the premier Consortium of 80 Industry-Leading Recruiters in North America.

  • Michelle on LinkedIn
  • Parchman + Parchman Executive Search website link

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