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Lessons James Bond Can Teach Recruiters

According to an industry expert recruiters who want to be more successful can learn a lot from watching the charming, suave international spy, James Bond.

Agent 007 will be returning to the big screen at the end of October. In the meantime, the release of the title theme by Sam Smith on Friday has definitely kicked off a sense of Bondmania!

Operations Manager at Zoek, Matthew Dodd has pointed out, as we approach the premier of Spectre, that recruiters can learn a lot to improve their performance and their results, from Bond. Companies likeĀ  use these tactics and they prove successful just as they do in the espionage film.

Dodd compares the attributes that made the fictional spy a success in the world of espionage to the attributes that can help recruiters achieve their goals.

Charm Is Key

While James Bond blows up a building in the beginning of Goldfinger, he also manages to persuade one of the associates of a megalomaniac, obsessed with bullion, to swap sides – all within the first 15 minutes. According to Dodd, the first lesson from James bond is that ability to charm.

He explains that the ability to charm, a self-deprecating humour, and impeccable manners are key skills to creating a desire in both candidates and clients to work with you.

Be Familiar With Your Enemies

One the techniques Bond uses that makes him so successful is learning about his enemies by gambling with them. Dodd points out that getting to know your adversaries in the highly competitive and high-risk world of recruitment is an essential part of success.

He warns that, like Bond it is wise to be wary of who you trust; and to use a little undercover espionage by thoroughly researching the operating methods of other companies within your particular recruitment field.


Although mad scientists determined to destroy or conquer the world are not common adversaries in the world of recruiting, recruiters do face tough and challenging situations every day. As Dodd explains, the way you deal with those challenges show your candidates and clients what you are made of.

He advises that recruiters are courages and make sure that they deal with those challenges promptly and calmly. Dealing with challenging situations with the suave dignity of 007 will help you to gain respect and a good reputation with colleagues, candidates and clients alike.

Expecting The Unexpected

Bond is constantly aware of the possibility of surprises. This ability to expect the unexpected saved Bond’s life in Octopussy when he was attacked in his sleep by a man with a rotating saw. Just as James Bond sleeps effectively “with one eye open” Dodd recommends that recruiters keep their guard up as well.

Unexpected situations such as a top candidate deciding to turn down a position you were hoping to fill, or lowing a major client should not take you by surprise. You can give yourself the advantage by spying potential issues and challenges, along with the solutions to them before they come up.

Have Your Gadgets Ready To Go

Q teases 007 in Skyfall, asking him if we was expecting an exploding pen, and stating they no longer do that kind of thing.

However, exploding pens aside, Bond can always rely on the Q department to supply him with the right equipment for the mission. In the same way, the majority of recruiters are aware of how crucial a good, reliable CRM system can be for creating an excellent client and candidate relationship.

Dodd suggests not stopping there. He explains that with 2.8 million people using mobile devices to search job listings every month – with 67% of those searching daily, making sure you are equipped with mobile recruiting tools, remote video interviewing, and applicant tracking systems is essential.

Social Skills

Knowing the value of a social network means 007 has a friend in every city – from Quarrel Jr to Felix Leiter. It is important for recruiters to keep in mind the power of social strategy, and to improve their recruitment skills on social media platforms. In addition to their own social media skills, Dodd advises that recruiters check the online presence of their candidates on social media platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.