Murphys Law: Call It Luck or Call It Karma

I’ve always been a strong believer in hard work pays dividends in many ways. In both personal and professional relationships you get back what you put in, whether it be directly or indirectly, I believe when I work hard at something the rewards eventually come.

In recruitment and in any sales role there is an element of luck. When dealing with people things can go wrong, people change their minds or circumstances change, and unfortunately when working in recruitment some of these factors can be out of our control. As a recruiter I’ve always tried to manage the expectations of my customers appropriately, never assuming they understand the recruitment process or the time it takes. Quite often, for people going through a recruitment process this is a first time experience for them so we need to educate them and coach them through this.

Having a thorough process does not eliminate the chance of failure however it does reduce it considerably. Identifying concerns early helps prevent wasting our client’s time and energy on a candidate who isn’t likely to accept the role, or a company that isn’t likely to hire this type of person. Additional to a thorough process, in increasing your success rate as a professional, is work ethic. Work hard and the luck will come your way.

I remember as a recruiter learning how to recruit. In my first few years I simply rang as many people as I could. I’d print off a list of engineers, work out how many I thought I could ring in one day then divide the list into days so I could set a realistic end date on when I could finish calling everyone on the list. It didn’t matter to me what I was going to say to these engineers, all that mattered to me was making contact, introducing myself and having a chat. I knew if I spoke to as many people as I could I’d start understanding which employers were employing, which companies had the major projects, which candidates were in demand and who was happy to consider a new working opportunity. I also knew if I worked hard, whilst it was tough making lots of calls with little reward, the good fortune would come my way. Sure enough, within a very short space of time I had become the highest billing consultant in a team of very experienced recruiters.

To this day, I could put my success down to my prior experience working in engineering or the training I received in the early days of my recruitment career. However, I truly believe my work ethic in the early part of my career was a major factor in why I became so successful. Working smart as well as hard was another key to success. This becomes easier with experience and knowledge of what works for me. The message I pass on to every person I work with as a mentor, manager or colleague is do the hard yards and the luck will come your way. Cut corners however and expect the worst.

Karma by definition

  • noun
    (in Hinduism and Buddhism) the sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences.
  • informal
    good or bad luck, viewed as resulting from one’s actions.

About the Author


Tom Murphy is a recruitment leader & founder of Aptus Personnel (Aus) and Aptus Recruitment (UK). After 10 years in consulting engineering and 11 years in recruitment Tom aims to be an employer of choice for recruiters.

Tom aspires to provide a working environment where people can be as successful as possible. Tom believes by being the best he can be as an employer, other employers and employees will want to make Aptus their recruitment partner.