I've had quite a few conversations over the last several years how it often appears that the same organizations seem to win recruiting awards year after year after year. Frankly, I think this is rightfully so - if you're better than the competition, you should win out. At the same time, I think that there should be a "Lifetime Achievement Award" for the consistently usual suspects :)
So this year, I noticed that OnRec was taking nominations . . . and instead of moving through the day with the groupthink mantra of "That's just how the judging in our industry goes" . . . or the age-old, "That's just how it is - Get used to it being that way . . . ", I decided to take the few moments necessary to nominate the Marines for their 'Careers Site'.
2 days before Sourcecon, I received an email personally from RD Whitney that he recommended someone from the Marines be present . . . but as you can imagine, it's tough to line up a military recruitment command that isn't exactly known for "standing in line for an award" :) In the end, I tried reaching out to as many Marine recruiters in the Chicago area that I could, and I don't believe I was successful in getting any of them to the award ceremony.
But at the end of the day, it wasn't about the award. It was about the fact that military organizations are often overlooked from a recruiting perspective . . . when it is, in fact, their recruiting gigs that are probably among the toughest jobs in America (Kudos to Kris Dunn on his post). It's also about a heartfelt "Thank You" to RD Whitney for having the audaciousness (not audacity, but audaciousness) to consider a military organization in the first place. That speaks volumes to me -- RD, you've got my vote.
And at the end of the day, it was about moving against the groupthink mantra that "one person can't make a difference". The next time someone tries to feed you that line of groupthink garbage, think twice and consider the source. Need empowerment? Look in the mirror and give yourself a pat on the back - don't let anyone ever tell you that one person can't make a difference.
You can, you should, and if you believe, you will.