Exciting times at Delta Consultants as apart from the usual cut and thrust of recruitment, we have a wedding to look forward to! A hopefully sunny August will see us celebrating the marriage of Elise and Christopher and as Mother of the Bride I feel under a fair amount of pressure not to let the side down in the dress department. Two months ago I was very blasé I admit. 'No worries at all' I assured the bride to be after a relatively easy session of shopping during which she managed to sort everything bar the shoes. I felt full of confidence, nay complacency, that in one quick afternoon in Cambridge I too would be lugging huge bags back from the shops. Oh foolish, foolish me. After numerous trips (kind of half hearted I admit as I don't really like clothes shopping and I certainly don't like opportunities for self scrutiny provided by changing room mirrors) I now am starting to hyperventilate at the mere thought of looking again for 'The Frock' let alone the hat, the shoes and the bag! After ANOTHER delivery from John Lewis - thank goodness for your existence - and the trying on of five more dresses, my husband declared the final one to be 'Hideous'. Hmm, so how come on Sunday when I saw it did he say he really liked it and suggested it to be a good standby if I couldn't find anything else? 'I was getting hungry and wanted to go for lunch' he admitted. With a growl barely kept under control I stalked off for a bath and a think. A long, hot soak followed by a chat in the mirror was what it took to make me realise what a total hypocrite I was being. Bear with me on the stereotypically sexist analogy.....

I want the perfect dress. It will take years off my figure and my face. It will give the illusion I am a size 8 with no bumps and definitely no lumps. The colour will flatter my skin tone and make me look as though I have just had a month relaxing by a pool eating good food and drinking lots of water. It won't crease or snag and I will be able to breathe, dance and eat while wearing it. Perfect, I tell you - just like that candidate you are searching for, hanging out for, and putting business growth on hold for. That candidate who is perfect. Who will take years off you by bringing in sales overnight, never lets a customer down, never late to an appointment, never sick, doesn't want thanks and is NEVER late with their monthly reports or expenses. That candidate, like my dress, is highly unlikely to exist. I won't say categorically doesn't exist but to find either of them would be like scanning the surface of the Moon from my back garden using my reading glasses.

What I am trying to say is that more than ever, we need to be realistic in our expectations and be open minded sometimes about what a professional suggests could be the perfect solution. Next time your recruitment partner suggests a candidate and can really explain why this person could be so, so right for you, be brave and listen. You may hear something you really like and when the next Personal Shopper hands me a dress that would normally make me recoil in horror, I will try it on. I may well be deemed speechless and buy the thing!