Interview with Ed Willis, recipient of The BOSS Group’s “Recruiter of the Year” Award.
Below is the fourth installment in our Employee Spotlight series, in which we highlight, Ed Willis. Ed has been with The BOSS Group for more than six years, recruiting for our Philadelphia, Dallas and Metro DC offices, and was recently named “Recruiter of the Year” for 2010.
Pretend we just met… What do you do for a living?
You know the Millionaire Matchmaker? I’m like that, but slightly less obnoxious. I network, network and network to identify “A Players” in the creative industry, and then work with our client partners to make the best possible matches for both parties. This may take the form of a quick one-day project, a temp-to-hire, or anything in between. At the heart of it, I solve problems for our clients and provide great opportunities for our talent.
What did you do before joining the BLR Portfolio of Companies?
I had two separate careers that prepared me for my life at The BOSS Group. The first was behavioral health: I worked for many years with children and adolescents with behavioral problems. During this time, I learned to listen first before suggesting solutions, and to provide positive and negative feedback in a constructive light. My second career was in temporary staffing within that same industry. It was here that I learned the business of staffing, the work ethic required, the urgency, the customer service and the commitment to quality that The BOSS Group represents to our talent as well as our clients.
To what do you attribute your success? What is your trick?:
Persistence. There’s no trick. I come into the office every day with the attitude that I’ll outwork my competition and that the successes (or failures) I had yesterday have no bearing on the challenges I’ll face today. Like a hockey goalie, a good recruiter needs to have a short memory.
Most surprising experience:
As a Philadelphia Eagles fan (Go Birds!), I never thought in a million years that I’d have the chance to move to Dallas and open a new branch. It was a great opportunity for me to see another part of the country and work with an excellent team who became great friends of mine. The daily grief I was able to give to Cowboys fans was just the cherry on the sundae.
Most rewarding experience:
Last year I placed someone in a temp-to-hire Marketing position with one of our clients. When she was converted to a permanent employee after only a few weeks, I went out to visit her onsite and she told me that I literally changed her life. It doesn’t get any more rewarding than that.
What motivates you?
When I’m doing my job well, I’m helping people. Our client companies rely on us because they have a need; it could be a last-minute emergency, or a long-term search for the final puzzle piece to complete their team. From a candidate standpoint, I meet many very talented people who may be struggling to pay their bills due to a recent layoff, or who may be passively looking to make the next big step in their career. Either way, I’m motivated by the unique position I’m in to be able to help people, regardless of the specific situation.
How have your experiences at BOSS been different than your past work experiences?
This job is more demanding than anything I’ve ever done. We’re accountable to so many people that it can be pretty stressful. But the difference between The BOSS Group and any other place I’ve worked is the shared commitment to success, from our owners down to our newest team members. I can honestly look any of our team members in the eye, and know that they’re working as hard, if not harder, than I am. We also take the time to acknowledge and celebrate our successes, which makes this job more rewarding than anything I’ve ever done.