Congratulations to Gary Patton from TKO Recruiting (#5212) in Denver, Colorado (USA)! Gary is a member of our Hall of Fame, and reached the Platinum Premier level of the Recruiter Achievement Status program in July. He joins Mike Pettit and Richard Gross as the only members of NPAworldwide to ever reach this level of production - total salaries of at least US $25 million.

We asked Gary a few questions about his career:

What is your top tip for other NPAworldwide members?

I'm not sure what my top tip would be, but here are a few thoughts. If you are an exporter, find quality candidates interested in a specific job and send them to your importer. I've never had much success with candidates not sourced for a specific position, but you never know so take two minutes and put them into Matchmaker. It's a numbers game so don't get frustrated with a few failures.   

If you are an importer, treat the split candidate exactly like your own candidate. If you try to hold back split candidates in favor of your own it will backfire in the long run. I'm a big fan of importers who will 'give it a shot.' I feel like over-screening is the worst thing an exporter can do. Again, it's a numbers game and I find that the candidate who ends up getting hired a lot of times doesn't really seem like what the client originally said they had to have.

How did you get into recruiting?

I got into recruiting by accident. I had never heard of the term 'headhunter' in 1988, but I was drinking at a bar with a guy who I played volleyball with who said he was a headhunter. He explained the business using a bartender as an example. At the time I was waiting tables at TGI Fridays and substitute teaching. I started to go into his office part-time and made a placement in the first month of a computer operator at a local bank. I think my cut was about $3000, so I quit TGI Fridays and the teaching and jumped in. I've been unemployable ever since.

What hobbies do you enjoy when you're not making splits?

I've been playing volleyball 3 -4 times a week for about 35 years. Found my career, wife and most of my friends from volleyball so it's definitely my favorite. Other than that I play Texas Hold 'Em, read a lot and play with my dogs.