When I recruited C-level executives, most of them answered the phone. Meaning, even if they weren't looking for a new job, they were savvy enough to take the call.
This was partly due to the strength of the reputation of the firm I was with, and partly because they had learned over the course of their working lives to take their career trajectories into their own hands.
I noticed more junior employees failed to do the same. If they weren't actively looking to leave a job, they ignored the outreach.
That's certainly anyone's prerogative, and if you're too busy, you're too busy.
There is also virtually no barrier to entry when it comes to recruiting, which means many of you are receiving sloppy, clearly copied-and-pasted mass LinkedIn blasts with no clear call to action or idea of the role offered.
If you do receive a basically well-worded solicitation over LinkedIn, though, my advice is to have a conversation! If your calendar is full, put them off. Tell them you can speak in a month.
But make the connection. Here's why:
1) You'll have an understanding of the opportunities available to you. You might even get some intel that will help you benchmark your own compensation, or just general helpful knowledge around what hiring managers are looking for.
2) You'll be able to react to roles that interest you and don't - and reflect on why. This will help you continue to get to know yourself and grow into ever more aligned and fulfilling work over the long term.
3) You'll build a relationship with someone who may be able to help you in the future, when you really need a new job.
4) If the job isn't for you, you can pay it forward and refer a friend.
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