Our resident expert in all things Irish, Courtney Keane ーwho is also a veteran recruiter and Business Development Team Lead on our Direct-Hire recruiting teamーsat down with us virtually and opened up on what it really means to have luck on your side in your job search. The truth is, which she’ll explain, is that getting lucky typically entails a lot more than simply being in the right place at the right time, especially if you’re looking for the next step on your career path. Sitting, waiting and wishing upon a lucky star simply won’t be enough for you to truly increase your chances of finding the job that’s right for you. Luck is a combination of opportunity, preparation and timing. In order to set yourself up for luck to bear down on you, a lot of work needs to be done ahead of time so you’ll be ready to receive it!
Communications Team: Let’s start by learning more about you and how you ended up in the staffing industry. Tell us your story…
Courtney: I have been in the staffing and recruiting industry for about six years now, but that’s actually not technically accurate. I grew up in this business. Ever since I can remember, I have heard the words “placement,” “interviews,” and “commission,” being discussed around my dinner table by my father, who has built a very successful career in the IT staffing world. My siblings and I never understood what he was talking about, and my mother (a school teacher) would just nod her head in an effort to show support, even though she was maybe retaining and comprehending about 35% of what my father was trying to get her to understand.
Fast forward to present time, and both my sister and I are following in my father’s footsteps, and are recruiters here in NYC working for different agencies. Although I am proud of the success we have all achieved, the road traveled was not one of sheer luck and easy transitions. It consisted of hard work, commitment, sacrifice, self-acceptance, and failure. Yes, you heard that right…FAILURE! However, there definitely have been some lucky moments which were a result of timing, preparation and opportunity.
Communications Team: What’s your take on luck as it pertains to your career path, and finding your course in general?
It is my belief that we make our own luck in life! I grew up with two extremely hard-working parents who instilled in me that you earn everything you get in this life, and the more you put in, the more you get out. For example, I have been an athlete my whole life. From a young age, I was competing at a very high level, and was determined to make something of my athletic career. However, I knew that relying purely on my “talent” alone was not going to get me very far, and it simply would just not be enough. It was imperative for me to work harder than my competition day in and day out and to consistently get better by exploring my own weaknesses and improving on them.
Looking back on that period of my life, I have learned that I have actually carried that mindset into my career as a recruiter. I believe there are so many parallels, and I also believe it’s why I’ve been able to succeed and do well. The best part of this job is working with people, and understanding their stories and what they want their paths to be ー and in many cases, helping them find that path. It’s so fulfilling to me to meet people coming from all different walks of life…hearing their stories, learning about their current career situation, finding out what motivates them. That is what drives me, and in turn, it becomes a personal mission for me to make the best long-term match for them and (hopefully) change their lives for the better. When I’m working a candidate through an interview process, it takes me right back to high school basketball and I get those same pre-game jitters and my adrenaline starts pumping the same way it did before a big game!
Communications Team: Finding that perfect job can feel a lot like seeking out a four-leaf clover in an endless field of greens. It can feel impossible after a whileー especially these days. What advice do you have for job seekers who are in need of some lucky charms?
Courtney: After the year we have had, I come across very frustrated candidates on a daily basis. They have either been displaced from their companies, know other people who have been displaced, and they are not sure where to turn. It was a challenge in itself to keep people motivated when there were not many jobs available the first few months into the Pandemic. However, my team and I relied on the loyalty and partnerships we had created with our clients and we stayed the course. We were able to open up many opportunities after a short period of time to our candidates we were then ultimately able to place. It was truly a collaborative effort where, in my opinion, we and our candidates got ‘lucky’ due to the relationships we had created and the trust we had built over time before the chaos set it. I am a firm believer in the idea that your thoughts and the words you put out to the universe will have an impact on the results you will yield. If you believe in yourself and your ability to be successful, let the universe know and put in the work to get there. I guarantee you luck, and subsequently, success will follow!
Communications Team: Do you feel like you have the “Luck of the Irish” on your side? I think we all have the “Luck of the Irish” on our side, and sometimes we don’t even realize it… I have been very “lucky” in my life, and I count my blessings daily for what I have, and how fortunate I have been. As much as hard work and accountability played a part in that luck, I know that some of it was just…luck itself. I think it’s important for us all to believe in the power of luck, and to take a good, hard look at the things we are unhappy with or the things we want to change. Dig deep and find the inner strength we are all born with to make the changes you wish to see. Then, your luck will follow. If that doesn’t work, there’s always Guinness. After all… it is true what they say, “Guinness: For Strength! Happy St. Patrick’s Day all, and wherever you go and whatever you do, may the luck of the Irish be there with you!