From Sports Management to Recruitment Consultant
Picture this; it’s January 2018 and I am sitting in the library at the University of Portsmouth applying to become an Associate Recruitment Consultant. Now this may seem rather conventional given I was a third year student entering his final semester at university carrying out the “stress-free” task of determining exactly what I want to do with my life. Here’s the curveball, though; I was a final year student studying Sports Management and Development, having recently competed a placement as a trainee physical education teacher. The presumption was that I would graduate in May, head back home to Scotland, and enrol on a PGDE programme starting in August. How is it, then, that I am now sitting in the offices of Eden Scott in Edinburgh as an Associate Recruitment Consultant?
Why Kick-start My Professional Career in Recruitment?
First of all, let’s begin by dispelling an ancient myth.
I do believe there are barriers to recruitment. Having been here three weeks I feel comfortable enough to say that if you want a slow-paced job, with little to no chance of career progression where you sit in on your own communicating with only yourself, then recruitment is not for you. Granted, I am a complete novice in this industry, however I do firmly believe that someone unwilling to learn and enjoy social interaction in a competitive environment should avoid recruitment.
Back to my story - why am I not a P.E. teacher or a sports development officer?
The truth is I enjoyed my course in Portsmouth. I love sports and fitness, but as graduation loomed ever-closer I knew I had to make a practical decision regarding my future. Putting aside my passion for sports and affection towards all it entails, I really couldn’t see myself working within the industry. I know my degree lends itself towards roles within the sports and fitness sector, but I found that I was not motivated by the thought of working in sports. If I was being completely honest with myself, I was aware that pursuing a career in sport wasn’t my priority and perhaps hadn’t been for a good few years now. My goal became finding a career that suited my very particular set of skills (not to sound too much like Liam Neeson in Taken 1, 2 or 3). I had spent my university days competing in sport whilst simultaneously enjoying the social side of life. I am, and have always been, at my happiest when chatting with others and having a laugh. I researched my options and it became very apparent that I wanted to work in business and, more specifically, the recruitment industry. It may well have been my competitive nature that led me here, but to this day I am still not sure.
Applying To Enter the Recruitment Industry
I firmly believed that my background and degree would hold me back when applying - I started the application process with a rather pessimistic outlook. After my first discussions with Eden Scott I knew I was wrong.
I have been involved in elite level sport and would say I am savvy enough to know when someone is telling you what you want to hear, so I can confidently say this was not the case. There was a genuine honesty that shocked me. The process focused on getting to know me - sussing out whether I had the intangible, relatable kind of personality required of recruiters – something I had not anticipated. I never felt as though I was having to “sell” myself. It all felt natural - and as a result I find myself at Eden Scott as an Associate Recruitment Consultant.
You may not know this, but I am an individual that does everything by the book, would never stray from the norm and, most notably, wouldn’t ever look for cheap laughs (I was looking for one there just in case that wasn’t obvious). Allowing me to be myself and to showcase who I am and exactly what brought me here is something I will forever be indebted to Eden Scott for. They have given me a foot in the door and have provided me with a platform to operate in an industry I could never have imagined entering, given my background.
The advice I would give to others in my position a year ago is to be honest with yourself. Don’t panic. Don’t be afraid to do something different. Most importantly, don’t ever stop being yourself. I am a Sports Management and Development graduate now employed as an Associate Recruitment Consultant, and I can confidently say that only happened by being myself. Recruitment is not for everyone and it is by no means easy, but if you are a sociable, competitive and conscientious individual you should hopefully now know where to turn.