Not Another World Cup Blog?!

12th June 2014 · Kevin Howes

World cup










The sweepstakes have been drawn, the fridge is stocked with beer and the nation prepares itself for World Cup mania.

Tonight, when our hosts take on Croatia and a sea of yellow and green dances carnival stylee to the tune of Pitbull’s latest masterpiece, the world gets ready to welcome the 2014 World Cup spectacular in Sao Paulo.

Rivalled only by the Olympics, the quadrennial FIFA World Cup is the most hotly anticipated sporting event, showcasing the brightest football talents from the 32 participating countries and drawing spectators in their millions across the world and unwavering attention to its national stars.

During the team selection period, International Managers were faced with the unenviable task of picking from a host of skilled players and creating a short-list of just 23 to battle it out in Brazil. No easy feat with such a variety of skilled and promising talent to pick from. With so many variables and potential what constitutes the perfect player and what makes the perfect team?

Much like our friend Hodgson, there are a number of key considerations to take into account when recruiting for a role, completing a team or sourcing in-demand skills for short-term projects. There are several parallels which can be drawn between our role in the selection, recruitment and retention of staff and the hiring process for the players populating our pitches this summer.

Youth vs. Experience:    

Picking between established old hats and potential protégées is something faced by any team sports Manager and finding the right balance between the two is key to beating the competition.

While seasoned professionals offer reliable stability, bright young stars come with great promise and potential. Roy’s bold move to go with the youth of Barkley, Shaw and Sterling, leaving the likes of Cole and Carrick at home, indicates his preference for energy and ambition, nurturing the future stars as they make their debut on the international stage.

The ability to recognise potential is hugely important in the recruiting process, especially when considering the growing skills deficit across several industries, most notably IT and Digital. Being able to see past experience (or lack thereof) is a dilemma faced by many hiring managers and the ability to recognise a candidate’s potential to learn and acquire new skills, that with enough practice will make them true contenders in a business, is vital for organisational success.

With his cross generational squad it will be interesting to see how England’s young Lions – fresh faced and ready for the challenge – develop over the next few weeks.

Effective Leadership:

Every good team needs a great leader. Stepping forward in his second tenure as England Captain, our hopes are pinned on Gerrard to take his team to glory.

But what makes a great leader? Apart from the ability to cope with pressure and the crushing weight of expectation, leaders are required to instil confidence, motivation and a drive for success in their team mates. Great leaders are not necessarily the most skilled, but they possess the ability to encourage their team to work together effectively and beat the competition.

With rising performance expectations and building pressures, recruiting great leaders – who go above and beyond to achieve exceptional business performance – is fundamental to the growth and future of any organisation.

Finding the Perfect Fit:

Just because they can kick a ball well, doesn’t always mean they’ll work successfully as a team. Those lucky enough to don the coveted Three Lions jersey were chosen for their on-pitch ability to interact and work together effectively.

Just as Hodgson’s starting choices will have a significant effect on the outcome of a game, so too does a new hire on the success rate of a team. It is the role of the recruiter to ensure best fit with every recruiting project. It’s not simply about skill sets, and cultural fit often outweighs previous experience. When recruiting for new positions it’s important to get to know our clients personally and the ins and outs of their organisation to find personalities which fit together seamlessly.

What makes people stand out for being better than their competition? The art of short listing is a knack we’re well acquainted with, discerning between candidates for the perfect role. Any given advertised position can attract in excess of 100 respondents and it’s our job to find the stars, ensuring we make the right decision, first time around, for the client. While national disappointment and hate mail is an unlikely consequence of an ill-conceived placement, it’s important to ensure we work hard and smart to get the goal and keep it there.

With just a matter of hours until the official opening ceremony, we’re keen (and eternally optimist) to see how our boys fare …. fingers firmly crossed, guys!