Alex Simmons | Senior Consultant
Tell us about your journey with the company so far?
Upon returning to the UK in 2018, after working as a Customer Experience Consultant in Australia, I joined Marks Sattin to recruit for the project/programme management dual desk, and as one of the first hires on the technology team. Within the first 6 months, there were close calls, spills and thrills. I am still learning as new situations continue to be thrown at me, no matter how absurd they seem on the surface. My real success started to kick off from the 9 month mark, where I was experiencing regular accomplishment on both a contract and permanent basis. With a promotion to senior consultant and record billings in 2019, the next steps are looking to the future, seeing how we can continue to grow the division, and where I need to be in the next few years to start to build out my own team.
Congratulations on winning £2K to spend on your dream holiday! – Where do you plan on going?
No idea just yet, although I like the idea of the Philippines, Bali, Maldives, Mauritius or New Zealand.
How many countries have you travelled to already?
Too many to count - I've done majority of SEA, Australia, Europe and a small glimpse of Canada.
What set's Marks Sattin apart from other recruitment agencies?
They have the best approach to targets and work environment. As an autonomous person, I've always been self-driven, and Marks Sattin allow you to reach your targets, in your own individual way. On the technology team we decide how our desk is structured, we remain specialised and decide our own fate in terms of success. Each consultant has a vested interest. There are also no strict KPIs, or being forced to meet weekly call logs/meetings.
What factors do you think contributed to you winning this coveted prize?
My manager Mike has been a great mentor to me since starting, guiding me through the tough times and advising me through the good times to keep the momentum going. The atmosphere in the team is definitely a positive and productive one which really helps rally us together. It's beneficial to build up a good contract book, and combine this with some perm placements, to reach targets.
What do you enjoy most being a recruitment consultant?
I'd be lying if I didn't say the commission. Another key part of the role is relationship building, not only with candidates and clients alike, but also on a social level internally within MS.
Tell us something not many people know about you?
I have a twin. I regularly wear a certain colour shirt as per each day of the week, such as yellow Wednesdays and stripy Thursdays.
As an autonomous person, I've always been self-driven, and Marks Sattin allow you to reach your targets, in your own individual way.
Read more 'Road to Success' stories here.
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At Marks Sattin we pride ourselves on supporting our people to be as successful as they can be. One way we do this is through our Road to Success initiative, which provides incentive for our new recruits who have between zero to three months experience in recruitment. The aim of this initiative is to encourage them to hit a billing target within their first two years and, in return, they receive £2,000 towards a holiday of their choice! A career in recruitment can be extremely rewarding and is one of the few industries where you are in control of your own earnings. We provide excellent training programmes for our new and inexperienced consultants, meaning you will receive the best in house training to help you fast track your career and get established in your specialist market. Some short stories from our previous winners: Denford Mukarati joined us in 2016 and is the first winner of our Road to Success initiative. He has consistently worked to hit his goals and continues to drive new business. Well done Denford - read his story here. Alex Simmons joined us in 2018 and is another winner of our Road to Success initiative. He is hardworking, likeable and is always pushing himself to hit personal and organisational goals. Congratulations on winning, Alex - read more of his story here. Nick Georgiou joined after leaving his role of an electrical apprentice in 2016, at the ripe age of 19, and never looked back! He is a committed team player, who believes strongly in the statement that "fear kills more dreams than failure ever will." Congratulations Nick - read more of his story.
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When did you join us? I joined Marks Sattin in November 2016 at the ripe age of 19. What’s the best thing about working at Marks Sattin? For me it’s the flexibility and autonomy. Of course, when you first start you need to find your feet, but once you hit your KPIs and are established in your market, you are trusted by people of all levels to do your job. Do you feel like you’ve got a clear career path with us and why? Definitely. When I joined Marks Sattin, I am pretty sure I was the first non-grad junior hire. At the time, I had no experience or understanding of the financial world or recruitment. The management team accommodated this and I spent my first two months as an intern, learning from the best on all things from what our clients do to the full recruitment process. After a few months I was promoted to Associate Consultant where I was solely working with candidates. After yet another promotion to consultant, I was challenged with starting a new desk from scratch. This proved really successful and the compliance desk has flourished ever since. This challenge led me to my new title of senior consultant. The next step would be either working towards becoming a manager or a principal consultant. The value at Marks Sattin lies in the way you aren’t syphoned into one path, they give you options! How do you keep yourself motivated on the rollercoaster of recruitment? This is a great question as it is one of the hardest things. Recruitment is known to have a high turnover, I think this is due to people enjoying the highs but not being able to deal with the lows. For me, the best way to keep motivated is to realise that you cannot control everything and fate/luck will play a big part in most of the processes you go through. The second is to have a balance in your life. In my first nine months as a 360 consultant I did nothing else apart from live sleep and breathe recruitment, which resulted in great revenue but led to me being burning out. It’s safe to say I have learnt my lesson. It’s really beneficial to have an end goal in recruitment and be disciplined in order to achieve it, such as buying a house, making £10,000 or buying a new car. Mine has always been the ability to own my own time and manage that myself. I discipline myself and live by the code “fear kills more dreams than failure ever will” and apply this to all aspects of my life. By having these goals you know you are constantly working towards something. What is your most memorable placement? My second retainer definitely! I was emailed by a client saying that another client had passed them over my details. Great start in my mind! The initial conversations were very consultative and they let me know they were speaking to other agencies in order to determine who would get the role. They decided to work with me and I quickly found them a number of suitable candidates and placed one resulting in a total fee of around £40k! Where will we find you at the weekend? At the gym. I do a sport called Crossfit which is essentially a horrible mix of Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics and cardio. Random fact about you? I am a really good cook. Read more 'Road to Success' stories here.
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Denford Mukarati | Senior Consultant When did you join the company? September 2016. Tell us about your journey with the company so far? When I started at Marks Sattin I had no previous experience in finance recruitment, and I was aware there were gaps in my knowledge. I originally joined as part of the commerce and industry team focusing on temp part qualified roles. Within my first two years I was given the opportunity to move across divisions and join the financial services team focusing on the same market. Since then, I've continually improved, producing personal record quarters and gaining a deeper understanding of my market. Congratulations on winning £2K to spend on your dream holiday! Do you know where you are going to go? I think it's going to be Dubai! Why do you think you were the first consultant to win this coveted prize? The training programmes at Marks Sattin gave me the confidence in my ability to recruit, this coupled with the great network I have built within the financial services market, has ensured that I have everything I need to succeed. What is the most rewarding part of being a recruitment consultant? Taking clients out on lunches and taking candidates out to celebrate their placements. It's really great to have full control of your day, with a culture where you are encouraged to get out and not be stuck at your desk. Commission is also a big rewarding factor and motivator. What is the most challenging part about being in recruitment? Initially, it's building a temp book and keeping it consistent. This has proven to be the most challenging part of my job. Nevertheless, the financial services market is really fast paced and I'm rarely short of candidates or live jobs. It also helps that the candidate database and retained clients at Marks Sattin are fantastic. Overall, being a recruitment consultant is demanding and you have to continually put the hours in to reap the rewards. Tell us something not many people know about you? I always buy trainers one shoe size smaller. Read more 'Road to Success' stories here.