Do This and Not That: Talent Sourcing for Speed and Success

Reeling in Quality Executive Talent Through Executive Research 

In today’s increasingly digitized and networked business environment, data overload is much too common. And this new shift in the executive research profession means a new game, new rules.

At a previous AESC Executive Research Forum, Conni LaDouceur, the CEO and Chief Sourcing Strategist from EQC Talent Sourcing Experts, led an informative session on the topic. She focused on how to learn efficient strategies to prioritize and dissect information in order to identify, source, and reel in the most qualified talent, not the most easily findable or easiest to connect with. Here, she shares her perspective on talent sourcing and effective methodologies.

Conni LaDouceur

AESC: What is the value of picking up the telephone in today’s heavily technology-driven era?

Conni LaDouceur: Beyond your database/ATS, most recruiters are relying on LinkedIn to source new, qualified talent. But, what is the accuracy of the data? An expert executive researcher can identify the top dozen potential candidates who meet all of the qualifications by calling to verify a candidate’s title, whom the candidate reports to, the scope of his/her responsibility, years of experience in the role, candidate’s predecessor, current whereabouts as well as names of peers and other potential candidates. When the research has been verified and further developed, the candidate development process, which includes outreach about the position, a vetting methodology for interest, and sourcing for additional talent, is tremendously improved.

AESC: How does the paradigm shift in talent sourcing affect the role of the researcher?

Conni LaDouceur: The abundance of online tools and sites has enhanced the executive search/research process but has also resulted in information overload for those who are not adequately trained in search/research methodologies, best practices, and metrics. The most challenging search engagement that we as researchers are asked to develop is only challenging because the qualified talent has not been identified, not because the qualified talent does not exist.

AESC: Having information is good but having too much can be overwhelming. And in today’s age, data and information are everywhere. How can a good researcher effectively navigate and prioritize what information to analyze?

Conni LaDouceur: There is no substitute for identifying the companies recognized for excellence in a certain industry/product/service and then identifying the individuals responsible for creating that success. Knowing what to say in a phone inquiry, utilizing NLP/neuro-linguistics programming, and delivering the “objective qualifiers” from the position description are empowering and fun! This skill set can distinguish the research–and researcher–and propel the search to a speedy and successful completion.

AESC: What makes the difference between a good telephone call from a great one?

Conni LaDouceur: Certainly, a responsive person on the other end is required, but many search professionals quit too soon. A great phone call not only compels the best talent to consider an opportunity but also elicits proprietary organizational data and unlocks qualified sources. A great phone call can also result in new business, a welcome by-product.

AESC: How can a researcher make one’s e-mail or voicemail stand out from the rest?

Conni LaDouceur: We use several methods to successfully connect:

  • Call while sending an e-mail so that the caller ID lists our name as it is appearing in the individual’s Inbox 
  • Send Calendar requests for a brief phone meeting for unresponsive individuals
  • Arrange a corresponding e-mail and phone call schedule. For example, schedule a 06:00 AM e-mail so that the prospective candidate can read it upon waking up. Then call at 08:15 AM to leave the first voicemail message of the day and again towards the end of the day around 04:00 PM; and
  • Ask for the candidate’s cell phone number

For the latest in executive research, sign up for an upcoming Executive Research Forum today. Or, check out the AESC Certificate in Executive Research, a program for researchers, associates, analysts and more looking to upskill.