Lucy Leonelli: Relationships, Referrals and Vampires

Recruiting Trailblazers

05-11-2020 • 48 mins


In this episode, Marcus Edwardes speaks with Lucy Leonelli, Director of Executive Recruiting at Twilio, Inc and former Managing Partner at Wilton & Bain.

At one point in her corporate career, Lucy developed a hunger for adventure that inspired her to look beyond her job to see what else life had to offer. Upon returning to Wilton & Bain, her professional motivations were never the same. She references Frodo’s return to the Shire in Lord of the Rings, where Bilbo tells him, “You can never go home again.” As fate would have it, Lucy’s business partners reached out to her with plans for expansion into the U.S., leading her down a new path in Silicon valley.

Listen in as Lucy discusses her transition to the U.S., the differences in doing business between the two countries, best practices for building your network and nurturing business relationships, why you need to start making more phone calls today, how to evolve from recruiter to trusted advisor, and how a traumatic motorcycle accident completely changed Lucy’s trajectory in life. From expanding her network, to getting through the right doors, to understanding and strategizing around competitors, Lucy goes over the various challenges she had to overcome to get to where she is today.


What You’ll Learn in This Episode:

●      [2:37] Leaving Wilton & Bain and moving to the U.S.

●      [5:27]Lucy on living with vampires

●      [7:28] Lucy’s first few months doing business in the U.S.

●      [8:30] What Wilson & Bain offers

●      [11:48] How doing business in the U.S. is different from the U.K.

●      [14:51] Immediate challenges in getting the business off the ground

●      [17:24] Building relationships in the U.S. fresh off the boat

●      [19:35] Other networking activities

●      [22:33] The biggest misconception clients have about the search industry

●      [26:58] When Lucy knew that the business was finally getting off the ground

●      [31:09] A case for making more phone calls today

●      [32:00] Sending LinkedIn messages that get responses

●      [36:48] The power of getting introductions

●      [37:56] Interacting with British aristocracy

●      [39:27] Lucy on her motorcycle accident

●      [45:16] Creating your own happiness

●      [46:24] What Lucy is excited for in her new role at Twilio

●      [47:44] Lucy’s parting words of wisdom


Key quotes:

●      “In Silicon Valley, people are very open to meeting up with you over coffee to have a conversation. The challenge is closing business. In the U.K., it’s the other way around.”

●      “Automation can find the specific collection of experiences and companies that you’re looking for. But how you find that personality profile and level of experience that’s going to fit into your organization requires a high-touch, human element. You can’t replace that with an algorithm.”

●      “A real shortcut to success in a search is getting introductions from your connections.”

●      “We always think it’s the external things that make us happy, so we always put happiness off. Really, happiness is something that’s absolutely within your control. Always focus on celebrating the wins and don’t dwell on the failures.”

●      “Make a plan and move in that direction, but don’t be surprised when curveballs hit you, because I think we have a lot more of those to come in 2021.”




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