Headhunter Tales: Jerry McMillin

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Great recruiters don’t just recruit. They build meaningful, mutually-impactful relationships with their candidates and help to change entire lives, not just careers.

If you think we’re exaggerating, then you may be in need of a new recruiter. Check out this recent anecdote from Jerry McMillin, a rookie Technology ‘headhunter’ in our San Diego office. Jerry is a rising star at PROVEN, and his passion for helping people to find more fulfilling opportunities raises the bar for the rest of us.

“When I first began at PROVEN, I knew very little about staffing as an industry. I had the misconception that recruiters were cheesy salesmen, often manipulating people into leaving their jobs in order to make a profit, and never really establishing a personal connection with candidates or taking the time to establish what is truly important to them. I quickly realized that I was mistaken.

My job is about finding talented people and connecting them with opportunities that don’t just benefit their career, but their personal lives and the people around them as well. Sometimes that means helping job seekers find new employment opportunities. Other times, however, that means identifying ‘passive candidates,’ or employed professionals who are not actively seeking new opportunities, and connecting them with more personally fulfilling roles. For me, that’s what ‘headhunting’ is all about.

For example, I remember being asked to find a Senior Java Developer for a large client of ours, utilizing a very niche technology that was nearly impossible to find in this area. My search led me to John, a developer with 10 years of experience in his field. When we first spoke, John informed me that he was happy with everything he was doing in his current role but may know someone else who would be interested. We continued chatting. John explained that he loved mentoring junior people, but that his company was small, and the opportunity to grow into technical leadership roles was slim.

That’s when I realized he was perfect for this role. I went for it.

John needed room to pursue his passion at work, and we ultimately placed him in a comparable role at a Fortune 500 company. After getting acclimated to the environment, he built a team of three around him to train, mentor and lead, while still getting to work with cutting edge technologies.

Fast forward two months… I received a call from John’s phone number and was surprised to hear a female voice on the other end of the line. His wife, Diane, called to thank me for helping him find the opportunity. She told me that in their eight years of marriage, she had never seen him so fulfilled in the work that he was doing, and that I impacted both of their lives in a way that I would never understand.

That was probably the most fulfilling moment of my career so far as well.

I may not know everything about all of my candidates, but I do know that this is what my job is meant to be. What’s important to me is finding out what’s important to my candidates, and then presenting them with opportunities that will truly empower them to grow and flourish – at work, at home, and in life. And the best part is… I couldn’t be happier doing so.”

Jerry is currently looking for Open Source Engineers, DevOps Specialists, Network Engineers, Web Developers and more. To contact Jerry, call him directly at 858 412 1138 or email him at jmcmillin@proveninc.com

Jerry’s bio in bullets:
  • Hails from the Pacific Northwest and currently resides in Pacific Beach
  • Attended San Diego State University and Columbia Basin College in Washington State
  • Worked at Qualcomm as a Staffing Coordinator before joining PROVEN
  • Is the proud parent of two rambunctious canines.
  • Enjoys exploring local microbreweries in search of the perfect IPA

Give him a call! (Or send us your resume, and we’ll set you up with a ‘Jerry’ of your own >)