BLOG: When I grow up I want to be – The Mobot, Slowbot, or Robot?

Anita Holbrow, Director REC, IRP

The Mobot, Slowbot, or Robot

Ok generation Mobot, which one are you?

We’ve all worked with the winners and we’ve all worked with the plodders, and some of us know accurate, deliberate people… but could you tell at school which one you were or they were?

Of course you could! And that innate instinct is the reason why you are great at recruitment. The ability to tell what a person is like, make the right fit whether they are a Mo a  Slo, or a Ro, and make sure that the values of all-comers are identified and highlighted.


I’ve got this thing that keeps going on in my head about the point when we all started knowing what we were, and that moment, that critical moment, when the all-important careers advice was provided at school about what we should study and what we should be when we grow up. Why is it that I have never really heard a story of this experience working out? Or perhaps I’m talking to the wrong people.

Growing up we all had different ideas about what we wanted to become once we finished school. I really can remember sitting under the stairs at school, me and the ‘careers advisor’ explaining to me what my options were after I’d just said that I either wanted to be an Archaeologist or a fashion designer. Now I’m not saying either was right,after all I was 12, but a bit of savvy info on growing sectors, skills gaps of the future, core skills and psychological analysis of my character (dare I say it) would have been helpful. Even if all it did was help me find out more about myself, or speed up my now 40 year enquiry into the mysteries of me (which for reference, does not conclude for another 40 years). This experience, I suppose, is a standard part of being British. Shocking career advice and painful politeness in queues..  I tell you what, here is the test of all tests to see if things have changed. If you laugh at this vintage clip then things are still the same- otherwise it wouldn’t be funny.

Monty Python – The Career Counsellor

And, to illustrate this for just a moment more, had fashion designer Henry Holland listened to the advice he was given he would have become a fish monger Or Baroness Patricia Scotland QC who was told that the best she could hope to become was a supervisor at Sainsbury’s. Luckily enough, everything always seems to work out and in some cases the individuals concerned even land up in recruitment as appears in this interview with a young lad who was told he ‘talks to much and doesn’t have many skills’….

Career advice on becoming a Recruitment Consultant

And just in case you wondered on how we are doing in the ‘am I seen as a professional’ stakes, thanks to the 80 year heritage of recruitment in the UK, and the same heritage of the REC and IRP our research last year of the general public, when asked the simple question ‘Who are seen to be more professional?’ recruiters ranked the 3rd highest on the list above politicians, journalists and estate agents. So we have a lot to be proud of.


So, enough of how brilliant recruitment is. we know this already, and I am sure you talk it up all of the time, just like me! My concern is your thoughts on my two, fabulous questions…

1) What did your under-the-stairs experience of school careers advice tell you, and

2) Do you think there is a role for recruiters in this? Not just getting people into recruitment, but giving the real sort of help in enabling 12 year olds to really connect with the real opportunities for work, whether they are Mobots, Slowbots, or possibly Robots (and of course I affectionately am referring to my sister who is an accountant 🙂 )

Let me know… You might just start the germ of a mini revolution.

Anita Holbrow
Director REC, IRP

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s