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Recruitment through an abstract lens

Date Posted: 08/02/2016

You may have noticed the photographs on our rebranded site, all taken by Richard Donkin www.richarddonkin.com. Richard is better known for his writing on recruitment and the workplace. He wrote the weekly employment and recruitment column in the Financial Times for 14 years. He’s also written two books on work, The History of Work and The Future of Work. His future-facing book won the Chartered Management Institute’s Management Book of the Year Award in the digital book category.

Richard is still sought after as a speaker and expert on work, but today he spends much more of his time on photography and novel-writing. “After The Future of Work that examined workplace trends and policy issues, I felt I’d said as much as I wanted to say about work,” he says.

But a picture can say something else. Working with Summer Creative to a creative brief for an abstract and intelligent selection of images that captured our recruitment philosophy, we hope we succeeded in delivering our thinking on team work, individualism, leadership and career planning.

“My aim always is to create arresting images,” says Richard, “But the challenge here was to select images relevant to Fuel Recruitment’s core specialism, highlighted throughout the site.

“Building my photographic skills dovetailed with thinking I’d had around multiple specialisms, portfolio careers and re-inventing oneself. You’re never too late to learn new things; moreover most people prefer to focus where they can on work that is difficult or that stretches them. That’s part of the human condition.

“I’ve been a photographer all my life but wanted to take it another step in to the professional arena. It’s not about fancy equipment – though mine is fancy enough – but about understanding client requirements. It’s also about finding the right niche.”

“I have a philosophy – something I’ve passed on to my children – that you should concentrate in life on things you enjoy doing, then work out a way of making a living from these passions. Too often young people gear their learning to earning in well paid jobs that they view as a means to an end. That’s not necessarily a bad thing if they can learn to love their chosen career. But if life becomes a series of regrets about what might have been, they’re going to find themselves unfulfilled and lacking in stimulation.”

In The History of Work, he wrote: Not since the Industrial Revolution has it been so important for individuals to explore the nature of their work. A poor decision today can lead to a lifetime of unfulfilled ambitions.

 “Matching people to the right kind of work can be as difficult as finding a match in your personal life and just as important,” says Richard. “I’ve worked with many recruitment businesses over the years and the ones that stand out are those that understand people are individuals not commodities.

“I like to think there is something about individuality and character in my photography. You see it in nature and you see it when you take on a challenge. One of the site images shows a team climbing Aconcagua, the highest mountain in the southern hemisphere. I was in that team and made the summit. It was one hard climb and all the more satisfying for it. Today I’m reaching for new peaks, searching out new avenues. The brave new world of work belongs to the technologists, the builders and the seekers. You can never sit back and why would you?”

Recruitment is a competitive market place and everyone at Fuel Recruitment knows that a business like ours can never stand still, nor can those of our clients. Our task is to search out those builders and leaders, to recognise excellence when we see it, and to ensure our clients have the best people in their respective industries. We have to be distinctive. Our customers demand nothing less.

Mark Esom