The world has turned upside-down so many times in 2020 that we can only expect things to keep changing! The nimble and the bold among us will be pulling out all the stops to succeed in a shape-shifting economy. You’ll want to set your recruiting strategy to keep pace with the challenges ahead.

That said, I don’t believe that the secret to your success will be found in the right video-conferencing platform or the most clever online poll. These are the five key traits I’ve seen help recruiters succeed, day in and day out, for 30 years and counting.

Be clear. Especially in the face of turbulent times, clarity is always key. Whether it’s writing a truly compelling job post or pitching a wonderful candidate, the value of our words has never been more important. In a recent interview with the Harvard Business Review, the Wharton School’s Peter Cappelli cites jumbled communication as the biggest problem with most hiring processes:

“I’d say the first thing we want to do differently is to be clear about our job requirements. That’s the biggest basic problem, right? And that is, we have a committee, we have five people we’re asking about what are we looking for in this job, what should somebody have? And we end up just adding up everything that everybody said among the five people, and we end up with these, you know, joke kind of job descriptions that are impossible to fill.”

Your work is only as good as your words: be clear, specific, and focused in your communications to forge quality connections.

Value patience and persistence. At Messina Group Staffing, my team and I are proud to work with amazing talent. We’ve forged ongoing relationships with wonderful people, and had the privilege of watching both businesses and individual careers evolve and flourish. The secrets? Perseverence. Personal service. Patience. While we have stacks of tools to make our jobs easier, the staffing industry still requires navigating mazes of nuance and subtlety. Persist and stay focused, even when the stakes seem too high.

Confidence is key. Confidence tops the list of key recruiting skills at UndercoverRecruiter, and I couldn’t agree more. We work closely with both clients and candidates, and the best connections begin with a sense of sureness. Carry yourself with confidence, especially in your own skills, to make the biggest impact.

Stay curious — and never stop learning. As the job market and the tools we use to manage its data continue to evolve, fortune favors the curious with more emphasis than ever. We can always build upon our skills. For some inspiration, take a look at this guide from LinkedIn on the most critical skills — both hard and soft — for the workplace last year.

Don’t forget: we work with real lives. Sarah Benz, our director of recruiting at Messina Group Staffing, puts it so well: “If you think about it, when we are filling long-term, high-level positions, our work can change the direction of a person’s life. Recruiters need to understand the responsibility of recognizing candidates and clients as more than a number or business opportunity; they are humans who deserve respect and our best effort to make a connection good for both sides.”

As the people who help the job market ebb and flow, we are truly the ones that make a difference in people’s lives — it’s a heavy responsibility, and we’re lucky to have it.

A previous version of these tips was originially published at The Staffing Stream.