Before heading to AQR’s Breakfast Bites, I must admit I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I’ve attended other meetings of a similar nature which turned out to be less than fruitful. So I’m happy to report that it was not only value for money, but so worthwhile that my scepticism soon vanished.

The organisers and attendees were welcoming, and the venue, i-View London, very comfortable. It’s made signing up as an AQR member a no-brainer.

Becki Harrison was excellent in her leadership, style and approach. The group was intimate, engaging and informative, and we were provided with nuggets of knowledge without having to plough through any jargon-filled presentations.

Learning is easier in such a relaxed atmosphere. Breakfast spreads are always a nice touch and this one was delicious, just enough to whet the appetite and stimulate my thirst to acquire and absorb all the information that would be coming my way.

It was interesting to learn that recruitment is getting more complicated and that the stereotype of a person recruiting their friends is simply outdated, while a new generation of thinking is coming through. Hearing about industry insights, such as the impending arrival of the MRS/AQR recruiter accreditation scheme, was extremely valuable for anyone with a vested interest and particularly an industry newcomer like myself.

Highlights ranged from disseminating information about incentives through to exploring different kinds of recruitment methodologies; from sampling to databases to social media. I discovered that cold-calling, e-mailing and street recruitment were processes which are still used but have been tweaked and transformed into evolved approaches.

Overall, the experience was an enriching one which allowed me to grasp a lot of context quickly and get to grips with a substantial amount of information about the past, present and potential future of the industry.