Whether you are actively seeking a new position or not, you will likely get an unexpected call from a Recruiter. Always use the opportunity to show that the Recruiter, that they have made a great choice in choosing to call you.
Thank the Recruiter for the call:
No matter how inopportune, always let the Recruiter know you appreciate their interest in you, and apprise them of your job search status.
To continue or not to continue the call:
If you are unable to speak at the moment, set a time for the Recruiter to call you back. Having a recruiter ally is always a good thing.
On the call back:
Reiterate your current job search status, and ask for details about the Recruiter’s company or search firm. Ask where they found your information, or did someone refer you, and who was it. If a recruiter will not tell you the name of the person who referred you, recommend that they ask the friend who gave your name to call you to discuss the position.
Let the Recruiter know that you will need to speak to the referrer before continuing the call.
Gather information about the job:
Ask for a brief description of the role and its requirements. Ask if the job has been posted to external job posting websites. Take the opportunity to see if there is a match between what the Recruiter presents and the posted job description.
Your demeanor and approach:
Be positive, interested, and articulate; the Recruiter is likely calling you because your experience and skills are a match for the position. But, what the call is really about is to ascertain whether you have the communication skills, listening, and possible leadership skills needed to excel on the job.
Be clear about your skills and attributes, but do not exaggerate:
Recruiters check references thoroughly, so your embellishments regarding might your accomplishments, responsibilities, or earnings may hurt you and disqualify you from consideration.
Closing the call:
If you are interested in the role, ask for more information so you can evaluate the opportunity, the company, and the Recruiter. Ask for a further conversation, and ask if your next communication can occur in person. Schedule a time to speak further.
Should the Recruiter ask for a referral:
Remember, not everyone is pleased to be referred to a Recruiter for a position without being asked, so be careful about giving out the contact details of persons without asking first.