4 Things I Learned Shadowing the President of the Nation’s Top Legal Recruitment Firm


Ben Conard

Trying my hand in the corporate world, I intrapreneurially joined a Fortune 500 company. And out of more than 17,000 applicants, I was selected as the 2019 North American CEO for One Month at The Adecco Group.

For my work in the movement, Fairtrade International named me one of the Top 10 Biggest Fair Trade Advocates in the World and #1 in the U.S. My passion for fair trade has taken me to the TEDx stage and on-the-ground to farms in Ecuador and artisan workshops in India.

Dedicated to great taste, consumer health, and sustainable sourcing, I founded Five North Chocolate®, an award-winning, Certified LGBT Business Enterprise® supporting cacao farmers around the world by creating deliciously nutritious, Fair Trade Certified™ chocolate snacks.

As the 2019 North American CEO for One Month with The Adecco Group, I was fortunate enough to spend four days shadowing Special Counsel’s president, Laurie Chamberlin, and her team in Washington, D.C.

Here are the top 4 insights I learned about the business:

1. It’s about people.

When placing a candidate, your relationship with them as a recruiter can be the difference between a successful and unsuccessful placement. If you treat each candidate as a transaction, you’re sure to miss the mark. Just like you, they’re human! Relationships go a long way in understanding best placement strategy. This goes for the client side, too.

2. Specialization is key.

Recruiters are tasked as match-makers to find incredibly talented candidates for clients, and to find candidates a great place to work. The needs of these candidates and clients truly depends on the industry in which they work, and the type of talent clients are looking for. The fact that Special Counsel’s sole focus is in the legal and data discovery world means that recruiters here know a lot about the industry. And they add a lot of this value in the work they do every day.

3. Transparency wins.

Being honest and realistic about candidate qualifications, placement timelines, and agreement fees has helped Special Counsel achieve great success in the industry. While it’s obvious how Special Counsel generates its revenue (successful candidate placements), it’s clear that transparency upfront leads to greater trust and even better-fit placements.

4. Doing it right the first time is in everyone’s best interest.

Yes, the more placements Special Counsel can make, the better for their business. However, did you know that if a candidate isn’t working out in a new position that Special Counsel has to refund their placement fee to the client? Because of this standard, it’s in their best interest never to force a placement. And the more successful the placement, the higher flow of referrals that come to the business. Special Counsel is in the business of doing things right!

I’m looking forward to sharing more insights on my journey as CEO for One Month with The Adecco Group! Stay connected on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or Twitter.

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