21 Jan 16 Recruitment Trends

Where Can A Job In Recruitment Take You?: An Interview with JT Pontet

This week, the “Where can a Job in Recruitment Take You?” series hears from our very own JT Pontet, Director of the Infrastructure team here at Burns Sheehan. With an impressive track record and an enviable portfolio of turtle-necks, read on to find out how JT has got to where he is now.


Firstly, please tell me a bit about yourself…

I joined Jon and Sean early in their journey, back in 2007, and they have not been able to get rid of me since! I now lead our brilliant team of infrastructure technology recruiters. When I’m not working I spend time with my partner, Charlotte, and our young son, Leo. I used to ride motorcycles and travel a lot. Now I drink too much coffee, speak fluent baby and change nappies. 




And how did you start out in recruitment?

I had always enjoyed working closely with people and I had an interest in selling to businesses, so recruitment was an obvious option. After a tough interview process, a large recruitment agency hired me as one of their youngest members. I learned a lot in a short amount of time and enjoyed my first taste of the job. Not long later I was fortunate enough to be recommended to Jon, who hired me as his and Sean’s second employee.     

What aspects of your initial experience are still relevant to you today?

Determination is a constant trait in any good recruiter. Regardless of experience or success, a recruiter will continue to face new challenges and must be determined to overcome them. Humility is important too. We all fail and it's how we handle it that makes the difference. As recruiting is relationship based, being able to engage with a wide range of people is always going to be relevant. 

What has been the most valuable thing you’ve learnt during your time in recruitment?

Recruitment has taught me so much, choosing the most valuable lesson isn’t easy. I have been surrounded by many successful business people who have given me great advice. One common theme is how to communicate; be it with colleagues, clients or candidates. Communicating includes listening, empathising, challenging, inspiring and so much more. Being a great all round communicator is one of the most valuable skills a recruiter can aim to possess. Naturally it helps in all aspects of life, not only when recruiting!

What advice would you give to someone considering recruitment as a career?

Speak with recruiters from across the industry as it is vast and has a lot to offer; from graduate recruitment to lengthy searches for CEO’s. Prepare for the many challenges, they will require a huge amount of resilience and hard work. Ask yourself if that’s really for you. The rewards are fantastic but nothing worth having comes easy.    

Thanks JT!


Another fantastic insight in to where a job in recruitment can take you. If this interview has sparked an interest in kick-starting you own career in recruitment, get in touch!

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