"Perfect the art of listening. Whether it’s with your colleagues or your clients, I think actively listening is the key to doing this job successfully."
I had a few questions to ask Viveca Riley, actuarial consultant in the UK and she shared her advice for someone just getting into recruitment, the best career advice she has been given and why she chose to work at Eames.
1. How did you get into recruitment?
When I first moved to the UK from America, I fell into a job selling cars which wasn’t for me at all. My degree is in Psychology, so I had a feeling I would be more successful in a job that related to people. After talking to a few friends who worked in recruitment, I knew it was more in line with what I wanted to do, so I started applying on my own!
2. What is your advice for someone just getting into recruitment?
Perfect the art of listening. Whether it’s with your colleagues or your clients, I think actively listening is the key to doing this job successfully. If a client tells you that they want “X”, and you provide them with “Y”, it only hinders your own success. An important aspect of recruitment is building relationships for the future, so showing that you can heed advice from colleagues or meet requirements from clients can set you apart.
3. What is it about recruitment that has kept you in the industry?
No two days are the same! There are so many varying aspects of working in this industry on a day-to-day basis, especially once the business development side comes into play. I really enjoy having the autonomy to plan my day and build my desk for myself, which you don’t find in every industry. It also helps to be surrounded by hard-working people at Eames who are rooting for your success.
4. What is your proudest moment in your career to date?
Qualifying for Founder’s Lunch!
5. What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career so far and how have you overcome that?
Moving to a new country and job in the middle of a pandemic. Adjusting to a hybrid working format while learning a new industry, and adjusting to all the cultural differences in the UK was definitely a challenge, but building up a strong support network both inside and outside of work helped me in that adjustment period.
6. What is your number 1 secret to success?
Get there early and stay late – and I don’t just mean to the office. When you get a new role, a new candidate, a new client etc., get in the door early and follow through with the process.
7. What’s the best career advice you’ve ever given?
Your desk in recruitment is like running your own little shop. If you owned a small bakery for example, if you’re not there to open the shop, bring in and maintain customers, and provide them with their pastries, then the shop would ultimately fail. Recruitment can be thought of in the same way – if you’re not actively maintaining your desk and providing an excellent service to candidates and clients, then your personal business won’t succeed.
8. How do you keep a work-life balance?
Reminding myself to take breaks. Taking time off is still very taboo in the US, and I’m used to working whilst feeling a bit burnt-out. So it’s important for me to remind myself to do things non-work related at the end of the day, on the weekends, and when taking annual leave.
9. Why Eames?
Definitely the people. It’s a rare thing to feel find colleagues that you are genuinely friends with, and I feel lucky to have found this at Eames. I feel very supported in my career and have a clear path for progression.
10. People would be surprised if they knew?
Most people don’t know that I am a classically trained pianist. I started playing the piano when I was 3 years old, and have won a few awards over the years from the Royal Academy of Music.