Recruiting like Radiohead

It’s Monday night and I’m listening to the new Radiohead album for the 10th or 11th time, yet last Monday I didn’t even know that there was a new Radiohead album about to become available. I then got an e-mail directing me to a website where I could pre-order a download, or a box set with vinyl, CD and artwork. It all felt very personal and exciting… even though several hundred thousand of us probably got the e-mail! No long marketing build up, nor critics or reviewers shaping your expectations. 

As some of you will probably know, a few years ago the band decided not to renew their recording contract and have since released new material themselves when it’s available. They make more money, and they keep a community of fans very loyal. I’m mainly interested in the music and the gigs, but for others there are regular activity updates, sometimes with new film or information.

I’m a fan of the band, and if there is a large community of Radiohead fans, then I’m in a smaller group who have remained with them as they’ve moved from a more mainstream rock sound to the experimental direction that they take nowadays.

At last week’s TruLondon unconference there was a lot of talk about talent communities, how important they are, how necessary they are and why they represent the future for companies looking to attract, engage and retain the best talent. I happen to agree with that view…and for some reason I kept thinking of Radiohead.

There’s been a lot written about how the music industry models need to adapt or die, and many bloggers have drawn parallels between that and the recruitment industry. So maybe Radiohead have the answer…

Is this what being in a talent community feels like? Quite exciting, really! Moving along in your current role and then up pops an invite from a company that you really rate, that you so want to work for, and they’ve got a brand spanking new position that could be just right for you!

Mind you, it also got me thinking about a different type of community…maybe one that grows around the individual. If companies can create their own talent communities with potential employees, alumni, recruiters, contacts, interims etc then maybe individual jobseekers can do likewise.

Why not? Develop a community containing recruiters/sourcers who specialise in your sector, contacts in companies that you would like to work for, ex-colleagues, coaches, mentors and confidants.

Like Radiohead you can keep them in touch with what you’re doing, blog updates and postings, new projects, CV revisions…even let them know when you’re ready to talk about a new role.

Let me know what you think…   

(PS I love the new album)