Dealing with recruiters can be very intimidating for most of us and since many of us are young teenagers when we enlist, this very often works against us. There is a huge difference in respecting a person who we strive to be like and in letting them walk all over us. It is important that anyone who wishes to enlist understands very clearly that it is you who needs to take control and to be the one in charge and you have to stay on top of things.
Because we don’t want our recruiter to see us in a negative way and because he is a Marine, we very often assume many things about them. We assume that he is looking out for our best interest and we very often assume that he would never screw us over. Each of you needs to understand that a recruiter is there to get you to enlist by any means necessary since this is their current mission as a Marine. If a recruiter performs badly in his recruiting duties, this can have negative effects on his career. A recruiter should only be used to process you through the enlistment phase and to help you out during your time in the DEP. They should not be the ones deciding what job is best for you, or whether you should be enlisting into the reserves or active duty, or whether you should go enlisted or officer.
The more doubt and questions you have before seeing a recruiter, then the higher the chances are of you ending up somewhere you don’t want to be in. Having a plan and sticking to that plan is key to getting what you want. How can a recruiter who knows nothing about you recommend any job for you? How can he know what career path is best for you when you have only known each other for a short time? How can he say what you will or won’t enjoy? When a recruiter assumes you are better suited for a “smarter” job because you scored high on the ASVAB, then this is a clear sign that they want you for a specific reason. A high score does not equal you having to take a job that requires a higher score. You are supposed to pick out three jobs well before you speak with a recruiter and you then are supposed to stick to those choices and pick one of the three based on your score and based on what is available to you.By telling a recruiter in a firmly manner what you want, this is not being disrespectful. By stopping a recruiter in mid-sentence and telling him you’re not interested in what he’s saying, this also is not being rude. By asking to have things explained to you in a very simple clear manner, this is not being out of line. By telling your recruiter what you want and that you won’t settle for anything less, this is not wrong to do. You should always respect them, but never fear them.
A recruiter is not always right, so it is very important you don’t fall prey to their position of authority and then sit there like a dumb ass and let yourself be persuaded to fill a role you never wanted from day one. You should always assume they are out to get you and by doing this you will be on top of things. The sooner your recruiters see that you are on top of things and that you are not some gullible naive desperate teenager, this will be the sooner they take you seriously. It is safe to assume that your recruiter will initially evaluate you and this will result in them knowing what they can and can’t get away with in regards to your enlistment. Trust me, taking advantage of prospects happens all the time.
If you walk into a recruiter’s office and say things such as, “I want to ship out as soon as possible”, or “I don’t care what job I get, I just want to be a Marine”, then you are asking to live with regret and you will probably give your recruiter a hard on since he now can play you like a fiddle. Make a plan and don’t deviate from it. Don’t be afraid to take charge of your life, and don’t be afraid to question the words of a recruiter. Don’t be afraid that you are going to piss off your recruiter. Don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. It us up to each of you to keep the pressure on them to ensure things are getting done for you. Do not assume things are getting done. Calling or going to see a recruiter often is not a bad thing either. It may annoy them, but this is your future and you have every right to ensure things are getting done for you. You may notice that once you have actually enlisted, your recruiter may seem a bit less interested in you. This is why it is important to stay on top of things.
I have sat in on several recruiting sessions as a civilian where I kept my identity a secret. I did this to learn about the current process and to let the recruiter speak very freely. I did not like what I saw and I clearly understand how many of you get misled. And yes, I am well aware that not every recruiter is evil, but they do exist and even good recruiters have to do some bad things at times. It just comes with the job.You owe it to yourselves to have things explained to you in a very clear manner. In many cases recruiters will only tell you half-truths, and they will rarely fill in the blanks. And in most cases a recruiter doesn’t know what will happen to you during your USMC enlistment, so don’t let him mislead you by painting this awesome picture of what your service is going to be like. Be cautious of recruiters saying things such as, “we can take care of that later on”, or “you can change that once in boot camp”. Just make sure you clearly understand what is going on and don’t feel pressured to agree to anything unless you understand it 100 percent. And understand that some recruiters may lay a guilt trip on you. As long as you stick to your plans, then it should go alright for you. Just don't go into the recruiter's office and act like a cocky know it all because if you rub your recruiter the wrong way, he or she may become less interested in you.
In the end you do not have to enlist at that moment if key things such as your component (active or reserve) are not available. And once enlisted, you do not have to ship to boot camp with a contract you do not agree with. If you enlist and are promised a job at a later date before you ship to boot camp and it never gets done, then your ass should refuse to ship out until it gets done.
- If you are wondering what questions to ask your recruiter during your first visit, you need to think about this: No matter what you ask him, how will you know what is truth and what is not the truth? You are going to assume that he is being honest and this just isn't the case some times. You basically should ask him whatever the hell it is you want to know. And after he gives you his well-rehearsed motivational speech about the Corps, you can ask him some questions about what he just said.
- Don't put to much weight on anything your recruiter may tell you in regards to how your experience will go once in the USMC. Since you are not him, it is important to remember that no two Marines' adventure will be the same.
- If your recruiter is pressuring you to earn a promotion while in the DEP by recruiting two of your friends, he probably could care less about your promotion and is most likely more worried with getting others to enlist for his benefit. I know and understand we all want to be promoted as soon as possible, but never forget that you are not in the USMC yet and you sure as hell aren't being paid to be a recruiter.
- Try to be confident and don't show desperation.
- If you are not ready to take a test or to visit MEPS and he is asking you about these things, then don't be afraid to say no. The number one reason many of you get fucked over by recruiters is because many of you have a fear of saying "no" to a recruiter.