Séduire un chasseur de têtes

Les mots clés et expressions:

To change profession

Definition : to do a different job, to have another occupation. 

Translation : Changer de poste 


Definition : a talent scout, an executive recruiter, an executive search consultant. 

Translation : Chasseur de têtes 

To meet requirements

Definition : to match the needs, to fit into the employer’s criteria. 

Translation : Répondre aux besoins 

Could I possibly call you this evening ?

Definition : Would you mind if I called you back this evening ? Could I contact you this evening ? 

Translation : Puis-je vous rappeler ce soir 

I’m calling back regarding your message

Definition : I received your message so I’m returning your call. 

Translation : Je vous rappelle à la suite de votre message 

To set up an interview

Definition : to arrange a date to talk in more detail, to schedule an appointment for further discussion. 

Translation : Programmer un entretien 

Referred from a good source

Definition : mentioned by a reliable source, referred by a trustworthy person. 

Translation : Recommandé par une personne digne de foi 

Shall I bring past work references

Definition : Would you like me to bring previous employment references ? 

Translation : Dois-je fournir des attestations d’employeur ? 

I’ve got an excellent track record

Definition : my performance has always been above standard. 

Translation : J’ai toujours obtenu de bons résultats 

To remain discreet

Definition : to keep all conversations confidential, to avoid making happenings known to everybody. 

Translation : Rester discret 

What lies ahead in terms of career opportunities ?

Definition : What professional development openings are there in the future ? 

Translation : Quelles sont les perspectives professionnelles pour l’avenir ? 

The right profile for the job

Definition : the character and back ground required for the job. 

Translation : Le bon profil pour le poste 

I think I’ve got the right skills and experience

Definition : I feel that my qualifications and fieldwork will more than satisfy your requirements. 

Translation : Je pense avoir la bonne formation et l’expérience 

To stand out from others

Definition : to stand above the crowd, to have something different which will be picked up on. 

Translation : Sortir du lot 

To play one’s cards right

Definition : to act in the most effective way to achieve something. 

Translation : Bien mener son jeu 

To hold someone’s attention

Definition : to keep someone interested. 

Translation : Bien mener son jeu 

To quote a mutual acquaintance

Definition : to name a person known by both parties, to quote a name which is familiar to all concerned. 

Translation : Citer une connaissance commune 

To allow the interviewer enough time to explain the offer

Definition : to let the headhunter put forward the proposition. 

Translation : Laisser à l’interlocuteur le temps d’exposer son offre 

To discuss the offer in more detail

Definition : to look more closely at what’s offered, to know more about the offer. 

Translation : Approfondir une proposition 

To show flexibility

Definition : to be ready to adapt, to be open and flexible. 

Translation : Faire preuve de souplesse 

To define the profile

Definition : to outline the type of person required, to give an overall picture of the personality traits needed. 

Translation : Cerner le profil 

Thank you very much for your call

Definition : thank you for getting in touch with me, I’m very grateful for your call. 

Translation : Je vous remercie pour votre appel 

Salary range

Definition : salary scale, average pay scheme, average salary for a position. 

Translation : Fourchette de salaire 

I would be willing to relocate

Definition : I’d be open to suggestions of moving, I am ready to go elsewhere. 

Translation : Je serais prêt à bouger 

When could we meet ?

Definition : When is it convenient to meet ? When is it suitable to get together ? 

Translation : Quand pouvons-nous nous rencontrer ? 

Les usages à respecter:

• When speaking on the telephone, British people always in troduce themselves first before saying what the call is about : «Good afternoon. This is Mr Johnson from Newton Holdings. I’m calling about…» 

• British attitudes vary towards «headhunting» as to whether or not the poaching of senior personnel from a company is simply part of executive life or if it is an unethical activity. 

• British people are generally loyal to their current employer and thus avoid recommending colleagues to a headhunter, but they would be willing to mention outstanding acquaintances from the past. 

Quelques règles de bon anglais:

Personal accomplishments : direct speech and action verbs

Direct speech and action verbs in the simple past and first person singular create a positive impact regarding personal accomplishments. 

Examples : 

I directed, I initiated, I led, 

I launched, I organized, 

I designed, I implemented, 

I gene rated, I established, 

I optimized, etc. 

To make a suggestion : the form “If I were you…”

Giving advice can be done politely by using the expression : If I were you, I would (or wouldn’t) + verb (I would can be contracted to I’d). 

Examples :

– If I were you, I would (I’d) follow this up with an email.

– If I were you, I would (I’d) keep my options open.

– If I were you, I wouldn’t refuse this offer.


Use the expressions you have learnt in this lesson to fill in the missing word(s), then check the result below.

1. If a surprise call comes in from ............ whilst you’re at work and with colleagues, it’s important to ............ and not give away too much information in front of others. 

2. Don’t cut the conversation short by immediately stating that you’re not interested, but rather ............ out of courtesy, which could also make you change your mind.

3. I’ve reached an important turning point in my life and I’m ready to ............ and learn a new activity. 

4. I think it’s essential to ............ and although I’m quite settled here in the South of England, ............ given accep - table terms and conditions. 

5. With my open and persuasive personality and extensive experience in this field, I feel I have ............. 

6. My initial reaction is one of great interest based on the main elements exposed. Could we possibly meet to ............ ? 

7. Having listened to you ............ for this job, I’m quite excited to say that ............ required for this mission. 

8. So what’s the next step ? Shall I wait to hear from you once you’ve managed to ............ with the Human Resources Manager ? 

9. I’m very eager to know a few more details and it’s a bit difficult on the phone . ............ ? 

10. I’m afraid I can’t speak very easily at this moment ............. this evening ? 

11. Whilst the offer is very appealing to me, future development is obviously of vital importance and I would really like to know what ............ 

12. I feel confident in being able to carry out this mission and I seem to .......... from all angles, don’t you think ? 

13. My portfolio and past references can vouch for my success and performance throughout my career ...........

14. I am aware that there are currently many candidates with more qualifications than myself, but I think what makes me ........... is my vast experience working with different cultures throughout the world. 

15. Would you prefer to contact my previous employers directly or ........... when I come for the interview ? 


Solutions 1 : a headhunter / remain discreet. 2 : allow the interviewer enough time to explain the offer. 3 : change profession. 4 : show flexibility / I’d be willing to relocate. 5 : the right profile for the job. 6 : discuss the offer in more detail. 7 : define the profile / I think I’ve got the right skills and experience. 8 : set up an interview. 9 : When could we meet. 10 : Could I possibly call you back. 11 : lies ahead in terms of career opportunities. 12 : meet the requirements. 13 : I’ve got an excellent track record. 14 : stand out from the others. 15 : shall I bring past work references.

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