Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

The Resilient Recruiter

Jul 6, 2020

In these unprecedented and challenging times, a recruiter can easily lose sight of the “why” and fall into the trap of boredom and burnout. How do you recover from burnout and reignite your passion? My special guest, Sharon Hulce explains how creativity and continuously reinventing yourself can help you overcome these challenges. 

Sharon is the president of Employment Resource Group Inc. (ERG) in Wisconsin and has twenty-four years of expertise in Executive Search specializing in placing outstanding leaders. She has won numerous awards including MRI’s Person of the Year and also Account Executive of the Decade.

She is also a Forbes Author who recently published her book, “A Well Done Professional Midlife Crisis: How To Bleed Passion & Energy Back Into Your Career”.

Episode Outline and Highlights

  • [2:07] Sharon shares the story behind her book, “A Well Done Professional Midlife Crisis” 
  • [7:18] How do you fight “recruiter’s burnout?”
  • [12:29] Running a desk during a crisis - three specific steps you can take.
  • [25:00] How do you uncover an MPC’s real value?
  • [29:07] How inbound marketing is changing the landscape of the recruitment industry.
  • [31:07] Hear the four “buckets” that Sharon applied in order to generate more inbound leads.
  • [41:10] Sharon explains her company structure and how it works.
  • [48:22] How Sharon shifted from contingent to retained search.

Resilience in This Time of Crisis

In this challenging environment, many recruiters can easily forget their “why.” What helped Sharon operate during times of crisis? As she puts it, “I have been through two recessions, 9/11, and now a pandemic. So, in my career, I’ve been through a lot. The one thing that I think has made us resilient and stay optimistic and energetic, and actually continue to build through all of this is really understanding what does value mean for your customers.” Hear three specific steps she took to stay in shape during times of crisis. 


Shifting to a Retained Search Business Model

Sharon has been doing a retained search business model for 18 years. I am an evangelist of the retained model for the benefits it brings to the client, candidate, and the recruiter. However, shifting to this model from a contingent business model can be challenging to some recruiters especially if their client would prefer the former. 

How did Sharon come about shifting to the retained search? “I had worked a contingent desk for just shy 17 years… The day I decided I wasn’t doing it any other way [shifting to retained] I lost my top 3 clients. So fifty percent of my business went away. And I held my ground… I said listen, “You have changed your value proposition multiple times since we’ve started working together. I am now changing mine. I am good at what  I do. I am a top 5 construction practice in the country. If you want to work with me as the owner of this organization and have my work on your searches, you need to pay me to do it.” Listen to how being firm and being able to deliver helped Sharon shift to the retained business model.


Sharon Hulce Bio and Contact Info

Sharon is the President and CEO of Employment Resource Group Inc. and has twenty-four years of expertise in Executive Search specializing in placing outstanding leaders. Her unique approach to business is as follows:

“A business and community’s most valuable asset is the people within.  For our clients, our role is to understand the necessary competencies, knowledge, social interaction, and personality critical for integration and outstanding performance within their organization.  For our candidates, our purpose is to help them define their purpose, attain goals, and find their life’s vocation.  We are proud of the emotional intelligence we have been able to share with our clients and candidates alike” 

She has won numerous awards including MRI Person of the Year 2019, Champion of the Chamber Award Winner (Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce 2019), 2019 Walter L. Rugland Community Service award, just to name a few. She was also inducted into the Pinnacle Society in 2015 and is a Forbes Author for “A Well Done Professional Midlife Crisis”.

  • Sharon’s website link
  • Sharon on LinkedIn 
  • Employment Research Group website link
  • Employment Research Group on LinkedIn
  • Employment Research Group on Facebook
  • Employment Research Group on Twitter @ergsearch
  • A Well Done Professional Midlife Crisis: How To Bleed Passion & Energy Back Into Your Career, Amazon link

People and Resources Mentioned

Connect with Mark Whitby

Related Podcasts You Might Enjoy


Subscribe to The Resilient Recruiter