A great thing happened to me yesterday afternoon. I played buzz wire and won an Xbox one! I was at the Recruitment Live exhibition at Excel London and had stopped by at the Mercury XRM stand, where they had this huge buzz wire machine shaped like a Christmas tree. 


Like most people, I was quite surprised when I actually won. I was expecting to walk away with a few ideas for my business, not an early Christmas present for my nephews, but then it got me thinking -why me? Did I have a latent talent for buzz wire that I hadn’t known about? Was it simply luck? I think not.

Having stood around the stand for a while I realised that very few people were actually playing. Everyone who walked past the stand could see the game clear as day and they were always asked if they wanted to play, but almost everyone politely declined. The reality is that it only took me 25 seconds to win, it was actually quite fun and also a welcome relief from the dry atmosphere of an exhibition hall. So why was nobody choosing to play?

Thinking about this for a moment, it was probably down to a couple of things – they either hadn’t spotted the opportunity or, if they had spotted it, they didn’t believe that they were likely to be successful.


And this thinking of course took me straight back to thinking about recruitment, or any sales role for that matter. I have been working with consultants within some of London’s highest performing headhunting firms for the last 7 years and many people exhibit the same traits as the attendees of the exhibition. They either:

- do not spot the opportunities, or

- do not think that they would be successful if they tried to grab them

We all know that this sort of thinking can be crippling to any sales person, but what is really sad is that it has nothing to do with capability. Like the people at the exhibition, anyone could have won the Xbox, but you needed to throw your hat in the ring if you want to have a chance. 

As they say, you have to be in it to win it, and I think it is always good to remind ourselves of this fact. It’s too easy to think that something won’t come in for you, and you then take yourself out of the game altogether by not even giving it a go. Recruitment is all about giving it a go; believing in yourself and exploring opportunities that are far from certain.

To sum up, I would like to thank Mercury XRM (I did promise to write a blog didn’t I!) for running the competition and to also dedicate this blog to all those individuals who are up for giving it a go. You are the movers and shakers in this world, the people who make stuff happen and for that I salute you!

(My nephews would also like to thank all those people who typically hold back from giving it a go, it’s because of you that their Christmas present has just gone up a gear!)