I remember it well…I was sitting in my old mentor’s office. My mentor – Dave – is the man who taught me the recruiting business. I was new to his Firm; a CPA and a 15-year accounting/finance guy who was taking a chance on a totally different career. This was sales. This was hunting. This was the real deal.
Dave was a former college football coach who had found his way into the business over 20 years before me. He was telling me about his start in the business. Here he was, a football coach who was now supposed to deliver talent to medical device companies. In the beginning, Dave didn’t know anything about recruiting OR medical devices. He would make cold calls all day to medical device companies and medical device salespeople. Then, he’d go home, make a sandwich, make a drink and crack open books about medical devices. This was pre-Internet. You want to learn? You checked books and magazines out of the library and read them. Eventually, hard work and tenacity made him a millionaire many times over.
He looked at me and asked, “How bad do you want to be good?” It a great question; a clever question, and one I have never forgotten. He was asking if I wanted to pay the price for success.
Now that I’ve been in the business myself for 20 years and own my own recruiting Firm (funny how that worked out, isn’t it?), I often wonder the same thing. Virtually everyone talks a good game. “Oh yeah, I want to be successful…oh yeah, just tell me what I need to do, and I’ll do it.” Guess what? The vast majority of people won’t. They’re kidding themselves. Or lying to themselves. What about you? How bad do you want to be good?