Petra Zink, Director of Women in Digital Australia shares her personal journey as she changed careers from Digital Marketing to Digital Recruitment, a move she considers life changing! 

Compared to others in the Industry, I have been in recruiting for 5 minutes but since then, there has been much talk about the (lack of) future of recruiters. My journey in the last nearly 15 months has been incredibly rocky but amazing and I wouldn’t change the experience for anything.

I have met the most inspiring people along the way and have come to understand that I can make a much bigger impact on others in Recruitment than in any other Marketing roles I have held. And it’s not that I didn’t love my other jobs, however I have fallen in love the personal challenges that a career as a recruiter brings! From being a candidate career consultant to providing business and marketing coaching for clients, putting on my HR advisor hat and then occasionally stepping up as a therapist! Above all however, I love being inspired by others professional and personal journeys. In recruitment, no two days are the same and the challenge of working with a diverse range of candidates and companies is a challenge that I enjoy.

My interest in a Recruiting career was originally tweaked by Holly Tattersall, a Digital Recruiter I fatefully visited one morning when I was on the lookout for a new role. She asked me if I was interested in a career change and if I had considered recruitment. It wasn’t something I had ever thought of, but once I did my research I thought I decided to give it a shot. Why not? I wanted a new challenge, so why not this one?

I spoke to several recruitment agencies, many of whom didn’t quite have the culture I was looking for, but persistence paid off, as I did find a company which I connected with quickly and easily. When I entered the recruitment industry, I didn’t quite know what to expect or what was expected from me as I started a Digital Marketing recruitment ‘desk’ from scratch, which meant that like many other recruiters, I learnt as I went and simply gave it my best. I quickly learned what to do and what not to do and have to say that hands on, sink or swim practical experience is irreplaceable in your career. Until you try new things and experience what works and doesn’t work for you, you can’t exit your comfort zone and grow.

One of the best parts of the change into Recruitment has been a greater sense of freedom and trust. I enjoy the fact that I learn by doing, and enjoy working with candidates and clients who are ahead of the game.

As recruiter, you are part of people’s lives and can influence candidates’ and clients’ future decisions,  So knowing what you are talking about certainly is a must and gives you the credibility to be the ‘trusted career and recruitment advisor’ they seek. Since then, I have learned a lot and enjoy challenging my knowledge every single day. It has been a big learning curve and certainly one I would have never seen coming but again, I would not change for anything in the world as I have found an area which I’m truly passionate about.

So what is the point of me sharing my story? My story is about the importance of embracing change, taking an opportunity when it presents itself rather than waiting for the perfect timing. So in 2016 I challenge you to trust your instincts, embrace your ability to learn as you go and take a leap of faith! When you make your weaknesses your strengths and push yourself out of your comfort zone you can discover and experience what you are truly passionate about. It is much easier to extinguish fire than to light it in someone, so give it a shot, fail but fail fast and most importantly, enjoy the journey as this is what makes you happy long term rather than reaching a certain position or income.

About Me 

Originally from Austria, I fell in love with Australia 6 years ago when I came for initially 6 months and never left again. After having held various roles in Marketing, I changed career and set up the Digital Marketing desk with Hudson Recruitment in September 2014. I am now Managing Consultant for Digital Marketing, Director for Women in Digital Australia, a fast growing (inter)national network group aimed to connect female professionals from the Industry and provide mentoring. I am also passionate about sport and run my own Personal Training Business part time. Other than that, long distance triathlons keep me sane, my students from the QUT mentorship program keep me young and my Golden Retriever  Sam keeps me on my toes!