2 Things Recruiters Can Learn from Gordie Howe

On June 10th, we lost a legend. Gordie Howe, affectionately known as ‘Mr. Hockey’, passed away at age 88. Gone, but not forgotten, there is a lot that can be learned from the life of Canadian hockey Hall of Famer, father, grandfather, and inspiration to many. Recruiters, take notes. By drawing insights from these Gordie Howe quotes, you can look forward to a direct and positive impact on your recruiting success:

  1. “The Stanley Cup is not something you can keep forever; you have to earn it every year you play.” – Gordie Howe

Don’t take a winning year for granted. If you’ve achieved record placements, strong client relationships, and top candidates in 2016, consider it a base line to exceed in the coming year. Continually strive to better your work by keeping an ear to the ground when it comes to recruiting industry trends.

Keep in mind that you and your team are consistently collecting information that can provide key front-line insights into relevant trends. What schools are your top candidates graduating from? How does placement longevity correlate with proximity to the workplace? What is the average time-to-hire for clients during the summer vs. winter months?

It is important to ensure that you’re utilizing data garnered over previous years to develop fresh acumen that can lead to stronger recruiting strategies. One of the ways this can be achieved is through access to the latest, most innovative applicant tracking (ATS) and client relationship management (CRM) software. Stagnating with a legacy ATS, which doesn’t offer new software releases and reliable support, can be detrimental to your efficiency and overall success.

At a minimum, you should expect robust reporting tools, a sophisticated parsing engine, integrations with job boards, social media and email, job posting capabilities, and mass communication. However, be sure to find ATS and CRM software that best suits your company’s internal culture and workflow requirements.

Learn from Gordie Howe and be proactive when it comes to your recruiting success. Shifts in market trends may require you to make some changes, whether it’s regarding your recruiting software, data assessment strategies, or general internal processes. Never become complacent after one year of achievements. It’s important to continually learn and adapt in order to cross the blue line, and win the recruiting Stanley Cup!


  1. “There’s always something in the game you would have done different. That’s why players improve, because they learn from what they did before. They might have been guessing before, but now they know.” – Gordie Howe

We know Howe is referring to hockey, but this statement can also be applied to the importance of reporting. As discussed, reporting is a necessary component when it comes to gathering  first-hand information about recruiting industry trends, and winning a spot ahead of the competition.

The reality in any job is that you’re not going to get it right, all of the time. However, if you’re efficient and continue learning you can track missteps, and gather important details that may lead to future success. Utilizing reporting tools – ideally those provided by a robust ATS system with respect to productivity – is a leading technique for bettering your recruiting practices.

As mentioned, every day spent recruiting amasses information and data. Operating your business with a system for collecting, organizing and analyzing your hard earned data is a huge asset. Well-designed reports allow you to make sense of mass volumes of information, turning them into key recruiting strategies.

Reports on user activity, opportunity tracking, open job orders and placements are among those you should prioritize having access to. While your first time you may have been guessing at recruiting next steps, once you’ve harnessed and utilized your data you can accurately discern leading practices for future endeavors.

The foresight allotted by reporting on your data shifts recruiting from ‘reactive’ to ‘proactive’, allowing you to advertise more effectively, recruit quality candidates, and increase business revenues. Read Big Data and the Science of Recruiting to learn more!


Gordie Howe was an incredible athlete who possessed many admirable characteristics. His drive, persistence, and passion at work are qualities everyone should strive for. By applying these humble lessons derived from Howe’s statements, recruiters can look forward to the same longevity in their business as Mr. Hockey did in his career.

Keep an eye on recruiting industry trends, stay current in the industry with the latest recruiting technology, harness your own data for front-line insights, focus on reporting for accurate assessments, and never stop learning!

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *