Being the MD of a recruitment business sometimes feels like preparation for a fight.

Not only with the big pro fight tomorrow night, we’ve got two excellent recruiters here who are taking part in an up-and-coming craze of white collar charity boxing, also taking place on Saturday night.

And that’s the bigger thing.

It’s made me read up a lot about the sport and it got me thinking, does the recruitment sales process have a lot in common with boxing terminology? I think it can lend itself succinctly to recruitment!

Just for fun, here’s a few we feel the most sympathy with.

1. BEAT SOMEONE TO THE PUNCH

To speak to a client about a brilliant candidate you’ve just spent an hour interviewing and get their CV across before a rival agency (who have found their CV on a jobsite and never actually spoken to them!)

2. BELOW THE BELT

As above but with crucial difference that the candidate you’ve spent an hour with, who is perfect for your client’s role had his CV sent over by another agency without their permission to a job they’re not briefed on.

3. BLOW-BY-BLOW

When you’re taking feedback from a client about an interview they’ve just had with your (well prepared, well briefed) candidate and literally everything that could go wrong, did go wrong. How could it be???

4. GLUTTON FOR PUNISHMENT

When you’re working so hard to try to find “Jesus with a laptop” for a client who really isn’t ever going to like anyone you ever send them, or really has any intention of actually offering a job.

5. GROGGY

Typically how most of us at PIE feel when Will suggests “Beer?” on a Friday afternoon...it’s never just one or two…or five

6. KILLER INSTINCT

When a client asks you to find a shortlist of magical unicorns from the planet “happy where I am” then make them see the beauty of the job opportunity you have to offer and get them to go for an interview yesterday at 11.30 a.m. with a pre-prepared presentation.  Saying yes with a smile on your face!

7. ON THE ROPES

When you’re at the end of the month or quarter and you’re waiting for hiring decisions and job offers that could go either way, you’re sweating, this is make or break, need to pull out the big punches.

10. PUNCH-DRUNK

When the most brilliant person you’ve interviewed in 10 years goes to see your best client, it should be a match made in heaven, you’ve almost chalked up the fee & spent the bonus, but the feedback is simply “not a culture fit”, “we just didn’t click” or “we’ve decided between the pair of us this won’t go anywhere.”

11. ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES

When the client changes the brief with every candidate he meets, the ideal person is still evolving, but it’s OK, you got this….

12. SAVED BY THE BELL

When a sales call is going so badly you’re relieved when your mobile rings and you have a legitimate excuse to end the call!

13. THROW IN THE TOWEL

When you’re trying to make a client see that a candidate you’ve met is brilliant.  She may not look relevant on paper, she may have had a few jobs in the last few years or maybe she doesn’t have the 10 years deep industry experience you want, however you know anyone would love her but the client just won’t see it.  Time to show her off somewhere she will be appreciated!

14.THROW ONE'S HAT IN THE RING

To enter willingly into a PSL agreement where the fees are below your normal terms, the payment terms are circa 90 days and the rebate is 100% for the first six months. How bad can it be?!

The real origins of these phrases can be found in the article below: