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July 30th, 2012

Speed Up the Recruiting Process with This One Question

by Mandy Green, University of South Dakota

If you have read any of my articles, you know by now that I am all about finding new and better ways to do things that will give me a better return on my time and energy.

About a year ago now, I was listening to a High Performance Academy coaching call being led by Brendan Burchard, author of The Charge.  He was talking about productivity and how he starts his day out by asking the question “who do I need to reach out to today that will help me progress forward?”

He applies this question to all of his businesses; I now apply this question to my program and with recruiting.  For example, what club coach can I reach out to today and develop a better relationship with that could potentially help me with recruiting quality student-athletes to my program?  Or, what person on campus could I reach out to today to introduce myself or to thank them for helping me with something?

Answering and acting on this one question has single-handedly changed the pace and quality of recruits that we are now able to get to look at and commit to my program.

Here is how I do it.  On my way into work I think about who I can reach out to whether it be a coach of a team I saw over the weekend, a parent of one of my top recruits, a local business owner, a faculty member on campus, etc.  As soon as I get into the office, I turn on my computer and crank out a quick email to them.  I usually only write to one person a day and only give myself 10 minutes to try to connect and build a relationship with whatever person I am writing to.  I also do it first thing in the morning before I do anything else because I found that if I leave it until later in the day, there is a good chance that it won’t get done.

I didn’t notice much of a difference at first but over the course of the last year, spending the first 10 minutes reaching out to one person a day has really started to pay off for us.  These coaches are helping us get in contact with recruits faster, are now talking to recruits on our behalf which is helping to get them serious about us sooner, and it has helped us narrow down our recruiting pool because of the insights they are now giving us.

All of this and more is the result of developing the habit of consistently reaching out to one person a day first thing when I get to the office in the morning.  Coach, there is always somebody who you can reach out to.  Be thoughtful and strategic about it.  Like I said earlier, just this one question has helped to speed up our recruiting process and I know it can do the same for you.

Mandy Green is a frequent contributor to College Recruiting Weekly, and is a Division I head soccer coach.  Coaches around the country know her as a premier expert on organization and coaching, and is the developer of a soon to be released organizational system and calendar for college recruiters.