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Finding The Good, The Bad and the Top Billers of Recruitment

Author: Toby Babb

Published date: 2018/04

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As most of the top billers I know fell into recruitment from various walks of life it’s often difficult to know which way to turn to find tomorrow’s successes.


The truth is, good recruitment can be taught, developed and found in the bones of most sectors.

At Harrington Starr, our own top performers are drawn from backgrounds in the military, brokerage, events, interior design or have excelled on a sporting stage.


Want to excel? Download our 'Top Biller or Management' guide here:

We recently interviewed a man with fifteen years under his belt as a Championship football captain. No time on the sales floor but brilliant foundations for reaching the top 1%.


We also have someone in our ranks that came off six years at the top of the NFL having played for the Philadelphia Eagles.


Tomorrow’s top billers can be found in every corner of industry.


Agencies that restrict their net to those that have spent X years at the recruitment coal face are being short-sighted with their growth. They overlook how additional skill sets complement the performance of the wider team.


That said, sometimes it’s necessary to invest in those with recruitment experience if you’re limited in the time you can dedicate to L&D.


But, if we’re talking about the makeup of a top biller it’s not about their experience it’s about the mindset and habit of success that’s ingrained in them.


When we sit down to interview, we want to be sold the person's story and understand what drives them. We are looking for a good person first, a strong professional second, and a recruiter third. It starts with the individual. We can then see what opportunities Harrington Starr could offer and what they'll do for the business and what the business can do for them.


But, if we’re talking about the makeup of a top biller it’s not about their experience it’s about the mindset and habit of success that’s ingrained in them.


In my time I’ve encountered four types of top billers. Imagine a Venn diagram with top performers overwhelmingly following into one of the four areas.

The Grafter

The pack horse that works harder than those around them. They don’t clock watch or shy away from hard graft and they very rarely switch off.


The Connector

They have a rain man esque ability to recall information and a penchant for networking. At any given time they have a list of credible candidates in their locker that they can reel off. A walking, talking, CRM.


The Thinker

They establish themselves as a knowledge base in their market and are strategic advisors to their clients.


The Competitor

Those that refuse to be second. They won’t accept it and are driven by a need to win, to succeed and to constantly evolve.





As an agency owner I learnt that the company’s performance is more important than the individual’s. Having carbon cutouts of the same biller creates an unbalanced company.


What makes one recruiter a great biller might be the very reason they’re a dire manager or team player.


Excellence is also contagious in recruitment and having a hive of contrasting top performers raises the game of everyone.


In recruitment the top 1% of agencies will always make room for the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker.



Outside of management what does career progression look like for recruiters and are agencies clearly showing this? Download our free guide below to learn more: