We were fortunate enough to meet Meghan Houle, a top recruiter, coach and host of the Pivot with Purpose podcast. Listen to our episode here. We were able to pick her brain about what motivates her, luxury and more. . .
What inspired you to get into recruiting?
I was always passionate about interviewing people and asking the hard-hitting questions to get to the root of what motivates them in life & career.
I spent nearly my entire retail leadership career running multi-million-dollar territories and stores across North America, staffing multiple positions each week.
Hiring was always at the forefront of my priorities as a retailer and I knew at a very young age running my OWN retail store at 21, you are only as good as the people you surround yourself with to be successful, so recruiting has been near and dear to my heart since my humble beginnings in understanding what it takes to build a powerhouse team of motivated individuals who each bring unique talents yet work in synergy together to meet all goals put forth.
And now in my current role as a Sr Executive Recruitment partner, I get to do that with my clients across all retail functions, levels of experience and categories.
It is so rewarding to see the joy in candidates when they accept an offer for their dream job. Connecting people with new opportunities truly fuels my soul.
You've worked in luxury for much of your career. How has our definition and expectations of luxury brands changed?
The luxury experience is something that I believe will always stay consistent.
When you are shopping at a certain level, you absolutely should know what it feels like to have a luxury experience in a boutique with the care and needs of the client at the forefront of every sales interaction. The heart of luxury is building relationships and leaving lasting impressions, whether it is your first time or 100th time in the boutique.
Luxury to me can be anything from a travel experience to a leather goods handbag investment, it is really in the eye of the beholder and also different brands/experiences can resonate with others as an investment seen not as valuable from a different client. I think for some brands, the word luxury is thrown around a bit to be honest.
Luxury expectations I would say have certainly been affected by 2020 where brands had to pivot to align with taking on more of a virtual platform but with the same care and follow-up/attention to detail you can get in stores, some would say it is a LUXURY itself, not to go into public but to be able to shop with the convenience of your favorite sales executive from the comfort of home, that to me has been a big change in a new definition of luxury.
What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite part is picking up the phone everyday and having the opportunity to change someone’s career trajectory and arguably their life, with one call.
You never know where a conversation can lead, and it is a magical part of what I do. When I know I have the right candidate for a job and a client, it is a wonderful feeling.
You've spent most of your career in Boston. Is there anywhere else you'd love to work (or visit for an extended period)?
I would LOVE LOVE to work (remote) in Hawaii, Kaua’i most specifically and my dream is to have a retreat in Kaua’i where people can come and do a digital detox from all electronics for the day, not worry about work, schedules, events, life commitments and breath in the island air doing things that bring them peace.
Burnout in 2021 is a real thing. Since COVID hit we have been forced behind screens far longer than we have ever been before and 2021 we all have been thrusted back into reality of everything so I know out there collectively, whatever you are doing, you probably need a break.
As humans, it is essential for our overall health and well-being, (especially mental health) to unplug and recharge so if I could “work” at working with people who need a work detox in a beautiful Kauai island getaway that would be my ultimate dream… but let’s see what the future holds!
I am open to investors for anyone interested!
Photo of Hawaii, Kaua’i by Karsten Winegeart, Unsplash
What skillsets are critical for success these days?
It is a skill to wear many hats and I know for a lot of positions out there, it is a requirement for candidates to be able to stay agile, flexible, and come to the table with more than just one skill needed on a particular job profile.
If a candidate is willing to learn, stay humble and open minded to new opportunities to get your foot in the door, not only aligning to a job profile but also being a culture add in possessing a great attitude overall, a company will take a risk on someone that may be missing a skill but is seen as teachable and who would bring a positive vibe and presence to the workplace.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into retail today?
Get really clear on your WHY when looking at which retail companies you want to work for, what jobs excite you and be sure to align yourself with brands you are passionate about where their core values and mission align with yours.
Are there any indie brands you love?
I love Summer Fridays, Evereden, Masami, Rare Beauty…..I am a big beauty junkie so I would say those are my investments. Hair, skin, makeup.
What is your self-care routine?
(How much time do I have… lol)
I look at self-care as a total wellness package in my life.
I LOVE working out, going to my gym and training classes each week which is a big part of my schedule which gets me out of the house and away from my desk.
Self-Care to me is also moments of peace where I try to schedule at least one hour a day without my phone doing acupuncture weekly, taking a walk, laying on the floor with my cats… whatever it takes to recharge after a long day on the phone.
I also am really passionate about morning and evening skincare, I think I am up to a 9 step system… (I promise I am not Moria Rose) however it does take me a while to get ready or wrap up at night (sometimes my husband thinks I go missing), but having that moment to myself where I am taking care of my skin for the future… as a child of the 80s who did not wear sunscreen for most of the summer and hit up the tanning beds in the 90s/2000s, I have to be vigilant now with my skin.
Take care of your mind, body and soul daily everyone!