QUESTION: How do you feel about initiating a first contact with a candidate via LinkedIn and mail or email? Do you feel the phone is still the best way to do this? – Conrad, Walpole, MA
ANSWER: I prefer initiating first contact via phone for recruiting. It is not right or wrong because you can give me an argument for the other and I would not have a strong argument back. However, I prefer the first attempt to be a voicemail. Can you do it via email? Absolutely.
When leaving a voicemail, the message should not be:
Hey, I am working on a great, great opportunity I want to talk to you about.
The message should be:
Hey Conrad. I have no idea what it is going on in your career right now.
That is the key sentence – I have no idea what is going on in your career right now. Because some people are paranoid about leaving voicemails, especially if it is a work phone number. I have never seen anybody have their messages checked, but even so, very courteous.
I wanted to see if you are at all open to exploring an opportunity that could potentially be stronger than your current situation. Let me know. Give me a call at _____.
Create some mystery. I do not want to give them any details, I want them to be intrigued.
If I am going to send an email, I am going to send the same words in an email.
The mistake people make, because people have sent me emails to evaluate, they describe to me the opportunity. I delete everything about the opportunity because now it is about the opportunity and it is not about them as a human being.
In the end, there should be 7 attempts to contact the candidate over 3 weeks and you can alternate between the voicemail and email.