The journey to the top

Lead Consultant, Paris Taylor shares her experience in becoming the top performer at X4 Group in her first 18 months as a recruitment consultant.

Paris has been promoted faster than any other team member at X4 Group, jumping 3 levels from Trainee Consultant to Lead Consultant in just 18 months. She is top of the leader board and has enjoyed trips to Las Vegas, Ibiza, skiing in Chamonix, Sandown Races multiple times and a whopping 8 out of 11 lunch clubs as a result of her success! Here’s what she has to say about her journey so far.

What attracted you to sales?

I wanted a career where I never felt stagnant and where there could be continuous progression. I’ve always thrived in target driven, challenging environments and I knew I wanted to be working in an industry where I can bounce off other like-minded people for both motivation and healthy competition. Because of this, sales seemed like the perfect environment for me to thrive.

What does success look like for you?

For me, it’s probably in many more different ways than I ever imagined at first. It is exceeding what I expected of myself and generating even more opportunities as a result of hard work and determination. It is becoming a Lead Consultant inside 18 months of my career (3 promotions whilst some of my friends have yet to finish University). But it is also huge clients in my industry coming to me because of a recommendation of my service and the fact that everything I achieve is only because of the hard work from me, and nobody else.

How do you cope with the pressure?  

I’ve always coped well with pressure and continue to put pressure on myself to never be complacent. That pressure mostly comes from myself so is easy to handle as I genuinely want to succeed and handle the hurdles. I’m quite a positive person, the better wins are the ones that were harder to get to – I find the pressure creates more reward!

What are your top qualities that you think have helped you do so well?

I think my work ethic. I have the same attitude when I walk in every day no matter how great or poor my performance has been over the month or even the previous day. You’re only as good as what you’re getting up to in the present moment, so I try not to get complacent or coast along, even if I’ve hit or exceeded my target already for that month. Complacency is detrimental in any job but especially one like recruitment where you are accountable for yourself daily.

What are you best at?

Something that has always come naturally is adapting to different situations. Every candidate and client situation are different and I think I understand that well. You could be a fantastic textbook recruiter, but where I think I have excelled is adapting my style or approach depending on who I’m dealing with. It is different every time and I think I learnt fairly quickly what works best in what situations.

What has been your best moment as a recruitment consultant so far?

Reaching the top of the leader board for the first time.  In a personal way as well as a competitive way. It is the ultimate milestone and achievement point that is laid out in front of you from your very first day in the job and it was amazing to use it as a moment to look back at my progress and how quickly I got there……or maybe it was touching down in Las Vegas on the High Rollers trip (never even been to the US before!) …or maybe hitting Lead Consultant… or maybe skiing…. or Ibiza… or maybe when I was able to surprise my parents with a holiday… there are too many!!!

What do you find most challenging?

Keeping motivated during the quieter times or when I am starting from the beginning with nothing on the cards. The job can be fast-paced and really varied but at other times it can be relentless and really repetitive. I am very impatient. I really struggled during my first 6 months as I began building my business when the wins were not instant. Patience is a virtue if you are doing all you can to get there as quickly as you can.

What have you found most useful/helpful in the past 18 months?

My teammates! The training programme here is fantastic but the learning continues when you’re surrounded by successful people who you can listen to and rely on for advice.  Everything I know is from observing my fantastic and successful teammates who have been here longer than me. The ability to watch others succeed and be shown first-hand how it is done by successful recruiters who I respect massively has been invaluable

What do you think makes a top sales person?

It is a tough one as there are so many successful people in the room and we are all so different in our styles and approaches. If I had to say the traits that the top consultants share it is focus, purpose (they want to be here and they do NOT want to be average), accountability, resilience, and pride in what you do. These are all things that have been said before but if you truly do have these traits you can make something of yourself.

Any advice you would give someone starting out in the industry?

Be observant and work smart. Observe the people you work with that are where you want to be – what are they doing and how are they doing it etc. Everyone has their own style of course but the quicker you learn the quicker you will master your own style. Take advice, ask for different opinions, tune into what others around you with more experience are doing and add it to what you can do.

How important is it to be self-disciplined?

I think it is one of the most important traits to be successful. When I first started being successful somebody told me “nobody can care about keeping this up more than you”. In this industry success comes to those who works the hardest and nobody can make you work hard except yourself… it sounds quite cheesy but I have learnt it really is that black and white.

How do you stay resilient?

By taking the time to reward myself for the wins (both the huge ones and the small ones) so I can recognise my achievements as well as my downfalls. Also, if something goes wrong or you’re not getting anywhere it just needs to urge you on to get there eventually.