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The Resilient Recruiter

Oct 1, 2020

To thrive in tough times requires us to embrace change and make adjustments - both in terms of our business model and our mindset. In this episode, my special guest, Patricia (Tish) Conlin shares how she was able to future-proof her recruitment business and create multiple revenue streams.  She also shares one of the most difficult times in her life, when she felt like she’d “hit the wall,” and the step-by-step process she used to manage her emotions, rebuild her business and ultimately reach new levels of success and fulfilment...

Tish is President of Global Consulting Group Inc., based in Canada. She has delivered strategic Talent Solutions to build great teams for her clients for over 25 years. During that time, Tish has produced millions of dollars in fees and built an office with 20 people at its peak.  Fortunately, prior to the pandemic, Tish had already moved to a remote working environment with a small team of full-time and part-time employees.  In addition to running her recruiting firm, Tish is an international speaker, author, and trainer delivering educational and engaging programs to boost performance and build tomorrow's leaders.

Episode Outline and Highlights

  • [4:06] How and why Tish started her recruiting firm.
  • [11:12] Hitting the wall - Tish shares the story of an especially difficult period in her life and business and how she turned things around.
  • [17:00] Three practical tips to rebuild - changing our personal reality, micro-goal setting, and transitioning from negative emotions.
  • [25:43] Creating multiple revenue streams by adding soft skills training - both live group training and online learning - for her corporate clients globally 
  • [31:20] The shift from contingency recruitment to a retained business model
  • [34:45] Getting money upfront! Moving to an RPO model / winning Managed Service Agreements with two tech clients who outsource all recruiting to Tish’s firm
  • [42:06] Why this is a great time to retool and continuously learn.
  • [44:05] How being a blackbelt martial artist translates to the recruitment business.

Hitting the Wall and Going Through Tough Times

During the global recession of 2008, Tish had a very chaotic journey of not only struggling in business but also having to take care of her husband’s and mother’s health as well as caring for her two kids. Despite the difficulties and overwhelming situation, Tish took action to focus on what she can do to bring things in order. Listen to how she turned these challenges into inspiring stepping stones to success.

Recent studies show that the key to success is more than intelligence (IQ) and emotional quotient (EQ). Adversity quotient (AQ) plays a major factor, which is defined as the ability to handle adversity, which is in other words, resilience. A recruiter’s career is full of adversity and challenges that can come from both internal and external sources. 

And a very practical tip from Tish: “When you find that you have a lot of negative emotions, you can break it down simply… your whole personality is made up of your thoughts, your feelings, and your actions. And when you take control and change those, you can really change your personality which is only your personal reality. So you can change your whole life.”

Hear three practical tips to help you rebuild when encountering tough times - changing our personal reality, micro-goal setting, and transitioning from negative emotions.

Practical Business Strategies During this Covid19 Pandemic - Multiple Revenue Streams, RPO model, Retained, Getting Money Upfront 

To thrive in tough times,  during the pandemic, Tish made sure that effective business strategies are in place. Hear about some of the best practices she took such as using her hobby as part of her sidegig, like doing training and webinars. Amazingly, this gave her multiple revenue streams. Her expertise in emotional resilience gave her opportunities, as she puts it “I saw the burnout in the workplace… we all see that as recruiters, there is disengagement… that is when it started and the passion of how I started speaking on that but it shifted into performance and now it is moving from both to mentor and coach, all of these soft skills.”

She also moved from contingent to retainer model, with the agreement that all leads will come through her firm. She moved to an RPO model as well, which proved to be very successful as some of her clients even signed up annually! “What I like about that model, and I think it could be useful for recruiters.. Then you’ll get their email address, you get their database, you have the flexibility working remotely.. You can be part of their internal team, and you can build really good relationships with the  manager.”

Also, hear very creative ways of charging fees to your client (depending on client’s revenues and what they will take) such as flat fee monthly, tiered based on volume, or straight hourly rate with guaranteed minimum hours per annum. This gives Trish’s client flexibility in reducing their costs while giving the recruiter stable recurring revenue streams. 

On Continuous Growth and Learning 

As you listen to my interview with Tish, it is obvious that she is someone who strongly believes in continuous improvement and learning. From being a black belt martial artist to becoming a recognized international speaker on performance and leadership, to moving from a successful recruitment career to becoming a talent expert. She encourages the same for all recruiters, especially this time of the pandemic. In her words: 

“Learning new skills all the time keeps you energized, keeps you happy. We are living beings, we need to grow just like plants. And so constantly learning and breathing and nourishing our minds are so important. I think, all recruiters, this is a great time for us to retool and learn something. It doesn’t even have to be directly related to our business… I do recommend decluttering your business and your life. Because that takes the weight off you for the next time.”

Patricia (Tish) Conlin Bio and Contact Info

Tish is President of Global Consulting Group Inc. and has delivered strategic Talent Solutions to build great teams for her clients ( Talent Acquisition, Leadership Training, Coaching, and Career Transition) for over 25 years. Tish's passion, energy, and professionalism have established her as an outstanding leader, mentor, and coach and earned her a nomination for a Toronto Business Leader award. Tish is an International Speaker, Author, and Trainer. She delivers educational and engaging programs to boost performance and build tomorrow's leaders. She is a Certified Emotional Intelligence Trainer, Black Belt Martial Artist, and Registered Holistic Nutritionist and speaks French, German, and some Spanish. Tish is currently working on her second book, which is about Emotional Resilience. 

Tish is a mother of two boys and an active member of her community. In her spare time, Tish loves playing soccer, being in the forest, tending her large vegetable garden, or spending time with family and friends at her cottage.

Special Offer for listeners of The Resilient Recruiter: 

Tish says, “Our Soft Skills Mastery training programs include live monthly training on 14 different core topics and she is selling them to companies all over the world. They are available as individual training products at For listeners of this podcast, I can offer a 20% discount code-ResilientRECRUITER25 for a limited time.”

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