What it’s like to work for Handler: Alissa Hawkins

Alissa Hawkins is a partner of administration for Handler. She joined the team in late 2020 bringing to Handler more than two decades of experience in the search industry. 

In her role at Handler, she’s responsible for assimilating the business development, marketing and search operations, accounting and administrative aspects of the business.

Alissa helps manage the daily operations and projects for Handler and makes sure all of this is in alignment with our business plan. Prior to joining Handler, Alissa spent 18 years with AGResearch International. Alissa has been in the Atlanta area for more than 30 years, and in her spare time, she likes to spend time with family at the lake or volunteer in her local community.

We asked Alissa to share her experience working with Handler, and here’s what she shared!

Question: What made you want to work for Handler? 

Alissa: What made me want to work for Handler? Wow, so many different things. Our firm is a leader in the Atlanta market. We have a reputation for delivering leaders worth following. Our search team is just well-gelled. We are all 100% for one another. Our firm’s values, our excellence, we bring to both our clients and our candidates. Our CEO is a visionary and has amazing growth plans for our organization. It was a no-brainer to join Handler. It’s fun to get up every morning and be excited about going to work!

Question: What do you like about Handler’s approach to recruiting?

Alissa: Handler’s approach to recruiting is very methodical. We have a set of Handler methods that we all use and refer to for each search as well, and we look at each search in a strategic way. How can we attract the best for this position? Is it using our different resources? Is it posting it to different job sites or to different associations? The creativity that our team brings, and our creative thinking out of the box, is what bring our recruiting methods to success for our client searches. We value and pride ourselves in the excellence that we both bring to a client and candidate experience. And that’s really what makes us who we are today. We call it ‘the Handler way.’

Question: What does it mean to be “100% For One Another?”

Alissa: Being 100% for one another has a lot of meaning to all of us here at Handler. Some words immediately come to mind: Teamwork, Encouragement. Empathy, Collaboration. We’re all cheerleaders for each other, whether it’s good or bad. We all have amazing days, and sometimes we have mediocre days. And whatever our day is, we’re all here for each other. And if somebody needs help or assistance or wants to bounce an idea off each other, that’s what we are and who we are here at Handler. It makes coming to work each day even better. Because, you know, you have the support of all of your colleagues.

Question: What does a typical day look like for Handler? Is there such a thing as a typical day?

Alissa: A typical standard day here at Handler. Wow. I think for each of us, it might look a little bit different. For myself, as the partner of administration—in our EOS world, we call that an integrator going in many different directions at many different times, multitasking from going from different operational aspects to marketing to assisting and supporting our search consultants. So “typical” — not sure I can exactly describe that. Fun? Absolutely. I love the challenges, love being busy and collaborating with our team and strategically talking to clients and candidates. So, not sure that’s typical. But it is in my world, and I love it.

Question: What does being a “leader worth following” mean to you?
Alissa: Obviously, this is somebody who has leadership experience, who manages a team, and who is really focused on their team’s culture. That is a big piece in my opinion. Great leaders have the emotional intelligence to really embrace the situation and think it through and are in support of their team. You know, we are so fortunate here at Handler having Eric as our CEO. He is an amazing leader worth following. We’re all just so blessed and fortunate to have him as our CEO and friend.

A leader worth following? They’re for their team. They want to succeed. They listen, they ask for opinions, they solicit feedback on situations. They want what’s best for the team, first. And to me, that’s what makes an amazing and great leader worth following.

Question: What was one of your most memorable experiences during your time with Handler?

Alissa: One of my most memorable experiences here at Handler was the first time our CEO, Eric Handler, scheduled time on my calendar for a Leadership Journey discussion. And we talked about my personal and professional goals in life and different things I wanted to do to continue building my knowledge and experience in the industry. It was the first time I actually had a leader who cared and was interested in hearing from me, and I remember hanging up the phone and, like, almost being in tears, thinking, “Wow, did this just happen?” And I remember sending him a thank you note because it was so meaningful to me. And I’m grateful for those calls and grateful for the leadership we have here at Handler. So every day is a memorable experience.

Learn more about Alissa here, and connect with her on LinkedIn.

Interested in joining Team Handler? You can apply to become a Search Consultant today.