Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Meet David Brown, Talent Architect

We are excited to introduce David Brown of David Brown Recruiting! David is the first of our Featured Recruiter Series; we plan to feature recruiters who use social media as part of their strategy to recruit and attract talent. David has been recruiting since 1995, focusing on the Design and Architecture industry. We asked him to tell us about his background, social media, and his blog. This is what we found out:

Where did you get the most significant recruiting experience?

My most significant experience came from two places, Merritt Hawkins and Callison Architecture. My first recruiting job with Merritt Hawkins was very influential in that it set the ground work for my recruiting career. There I learned how to develop relationships, source candidates and negotiate. My other significant recruiting experience came when I worked at Callison Architecture. My work with Callison let me develop upon what I knew. Not only was I using my skills to develop relationships, source and negotiate I was learning about the niche I am in love with, design. I was able to see first-hand the inner workings of an architectural firm and was exposed to the human resources/regulations aspect of the business. This gave me a complete view of the recruiting and on-boarding process in the architecture and interior design industry.

Tell us about your company. How did you come to recruit in this niche space?

Recruiting in the design space, focusing on Architects and Interior Designers, was a logical choice as I started my own firm. I have been working in this niche for the past seven years and have been lucky enough to see the industry from two sides, the firm side and the corporation side.

Because of my time with both Callison and Starbucks I am able to recognize design talent; I have learned the vernacular, can evaluate a portfolio and have developed a great network of contacts.

Beyond that, I love design. I am fascinated by the way architecture inspires us and interior design defines a space.

What are your most effective methods of sourcing candidates?

As I mentioned, I have a large network of candidates that I have developed over the years. With that being said, much of my daily work is sourcing for new candidates. I have had great success with LinkedIn. I have found most people on LinkedIn are ready to network and learn about new positions.

Another effective way I have been reaching candidates is with my blog. My approach to my blog is to balance the fun and the business related. My love of architecture inspires me to post about new buildings or developments. My love of design inspires me to post about design in our modern world. My love of recruiting inspires me to post articles about portfolio and resume development or how firms can enhance their recruiting programs.

When and why did you start your blog?

I started my blog before I started my firm, in February of 2009. I started the blog as an inexpensive way to develop my brand. The blog allows me to be an expert in my field. Through interesting and informative articles I have developed my brand as a trusted, informative and knowledgeable business. With that as a base I feel my firm is poised to be very successful.

Who reads it?

I have been surprised by who reads my blog. Of course I am developing a great following in the design world, with job seekers and firm leadership alike, but I also have a strong following among Europeans. I have a stat counter on my site and 30% of my daily hits are from Europe.

I have also received great feedback from people who enjoy architecture but have no ties to the industry. This is why I feel it is important to have a balanced blog, filled with the informative and the fun.

How has it been received?

I am so grateful that my blog has been received so well. When I started writing the blog I had no idea who would read it or really what to say. Of course I had an end goal, reaching candidate and clients to grow my business, but I had no idea what that looked like. So, I wrote the blog for me and I still do. I write about what I know and what interest me. Fortunately there are others with similar interest.

Please share other examples of using social media for recruiting:

My approach to using social media to recruit is to try it all. LinkedIn has been a great place to reach candidates but I also use Twitter and Facebook to develop a base of candidates.

Something new I just started this week is my own LinkedIn group. I think of it as an extension of my blog. It allows me to develop a following of candidates and clients in a venue where people are primed to network and do business.

What do you do when you're not recruiting?

When I am not recruiting I enjoy fitness. I run and enjoy training in the gym. I also love to travel. I am also a TV junkie; my Tivo always seems to be recording something.

Your favorite:

My favorite vacation spot has to be London. I feel it is truly the world's city. I love its energy, diversity, architecture, history and modernism. I get there as often as I can.

You can follow David's Blog:http://davidbrownrecruiting.wordpress.com

Find him on Twitter: @dbrecruiting

Connect with him on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/davidbrownrecruiting

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