Ronnie Bratcher

Sourcing Lead, Looking for next challenge

1. At what age did you become an adult? What happened, and how did you know?

I am going to say it was around 15 years old. I actually had my first job at 13 where I worked in the oilfields in Oklahoma in the summer doing grunt work. But I started working 30+ hour weeks during high school which made me grow up quickly. I worked in the restaurant industry and encountered situations with the public and co-workers that I had to make decisions and solve problems on my own. I also had to balance my studies and work which accelerated my maturity and helped me grow into the adult I am today.

2. Do you remember a time when you were happiest as a child? Where were you, who were you with and what were you doing?

Yes, when I turned 10 years old, I spent the summer riding my bike everywhere. I usually met up with my neighborhood friends and we would just freely ride for miles all around the town I grew up in. We would go to the library, the parks, and the most fun thing is we would slog all our fishing gear to ponds that were on private properties and fish all day miles from where we lived. While mostly the fishing was peaceful, we did have encounters with the land owners and were told to go away with rifles pointed at us, those were scary moments as a child but I will never forget the freedom of just riding anywhere we wanted for the entire day.

3. Name a well-known person you admire and explain why you hold them high esteem?

Madeleine Albright- former US Secretary of State and Ambassador of the United Nations. In my opinion, she embodied the true spirit of value in serving and dedicating her life to bring our countries into being better humans. Her life experience in experiencing communism in Czechoslovakia then immigrating to the United States and then becoming one of the greatest leaders in international affairs. She was highly intelligent, determined, trailblazed, and was a Leader and Advocate for democracy and human rights. I always felt she should have been The President of the US but unfortunately our law of not being born in the US held her from serving in that capacity.

4. What are the three books that you would unhesitatingly recommend to others? Why?

Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell.

This is a true story of Marcus who is a Navy SEAL who was deployed to Afghanistan with his four member team. He tells us the horrific battle they encountered with a Taliban insurgent group in which he lost his three team members and he survived after being captured and eventually rescued and brought back to the US. There was a movie made about this as well. Why I recommend this book : Luttrell’s team engaged in a fierce firefight against a force of around 30 to 200 Taliban fighters. (the exact number is contested and varies in different accounts). It was the largest loss of life in Navy SEAL history. This is the story of the men who fought ferociously beside him to the end. I am embodied by this story of the determination, dedication and heroic efforts by this team and how Marcus is a survivor and he co-founded the Lone Survivor Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides support and therapeutic retreats for wounded veterans and their families.

Man’s Search For Meaning by Viktor E. Frankel.

Frankl, is an Austrian psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor who tells us of his deeply personal account of his time as a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps, including Auschwitz. His firsthand experiences and observations, he describes a harrowing depiction of the suffering and dehumanization endured by prisoners during the Holocaust. There are five reasons I recommend reading this book: His perspective on the Human Condition, he explores existential questions and the search for meaning in life, is testament to human resilience and the power of the human spirit. and is very relevant to today for all people of different backgrounds and cultures.

Younger Next Year by Chris Crowley & Henry S. Lodge, MD.

For the last few years, I have been playing mind games with my motivation to stay healthy. I used to race my bike on average of 70+ races a year and I finally found a book that has reacquainted me to do things to strive to keep living. The book primarily focuses on the idea that individuals can significantly improve their health, vitality, and overall quality of life by adopting an active lifestyle, regardless of their age. I recommend this book because it provides a combination of scientific research, medical advice, and practical strategies to help you understand the aging process and take proactive steps to live a more fulfilling and youthful life. Let’s hope!!

5. If you wrote a ‘user manual’ for how people should interact with you, what would be the most important point in the manual?

I love talking one on one with people. I enjoy sharing information on our professional and other topics outside of what we do in recruiting and sourcing. If you are going to interact with me, I do not want to hear arrogance and ego type of conversation. I get totally disgusted when I hear people tell me how much better they are than others or talk down to a person. We all have our strengths and weaknesses and we all need each other to balance these to be a productive and healthy society.

6. What personality trait has got you in the most trouble? What kind of trouble does it get you in?

Being shy. This gets me into trouble with my not being able to ask others for help or assistance. I have a very low self-esteem and have been self-driven my entire life with no help from others in many perspectives (emotionally, financially, etc.) Most people that know me will say I’m humble and not very good at displaying my positive traits too well. The funny thing is when I present and train at conferences I really enjoy talking to the audience and somehow my other personality comes out on stage.

7. Have you always had the same political beliefs? If so, why do you think you have held them so long? If not, what event caused you to change your view?

Yes. I started emerging my awareness of politics in my early 20’s. Growing up in the US I have always believed that we are a country that is aware of all countries and provides support to make situations and humanity better for all on this planet. In my most recent years of life I have seen a change of stance on this idea and we have reversed our ideology of a democracy here and as a person who care for all of human life no matter where you live, I am concerned on the direction we are going and as a Father of a Generation Z daughter, my hope is the younger humans will unite all the planet and continue to make this world a amazing place to live and a gift to be living on this planet. Oh, maybe I went too deep on this thought ha ha!!

8. When was the last time you felt like an outsider in a group? What/How did you learn?

Oh this is going to be in parallel with my shyness issue and happens very often in my personal and professional life. I am not good at engulfing myself into a group. I have always been taught that if I am not asked to join an activity or group then I am not welcome. What I continue to learn is I am not an outsider and I do belong in some groups and situations and I sometimes just need to ask if I can join.

9) What is the best purchase you’ve made recently? Why?

Cycling is not well televised here in the United States. So I purchased a subscription for Global Cycling Network (GCN) based out of the UK. I am able now to watch entire stages of professional cycling from around the world either live as it is happening or by replay/on demand. I most recently watched the Giro d’ Italia (Tour of Italy) and I saw more coverage than any American network ever shows and lots of behind the scenes that interest me as a cycling fan and participant. Best $49.99 I spent in a long time!!

10) What’s the last image on your camera roll? Care to explain?

A picture of my daughter with our newly adopted 2-month-old Kittens. It is a random photo, but we recently lost our last cat of 15 years recently. We have been indecisive to make a commitment to be Fur parents again as we know the dedication it takes to raise and love the special creatures. So my daughter has been urging us to adopt and after 4 months of her negotiation skills, we finally caved in and have brought these two cute kittens into our family. Never a break in life being a parent to humans and animals, right?!!

11) If you were to survive the zombie apocalypse, what role would you play in the new society that would follow?

Very interesting! So if we are like divided up into a sector environment, I feel like I could be a Leader of one of those quadrants. I feel like I have had enough life experience to help motivate and guide others to transition to our new lives and rebuild society to love one another and become one human race in peace which I dream about daily.

12. Aside from family & friends, if you could invite any 3 people - living or dead - to your final dinner party before the end of the world, who would they be and why?

Of course, any Pearl Jam band member, but if I had to choose it would be Eddie Vedder. I have been listening to his lyrics and music for 35 years now and would love to have a meal and conversation about how he inspires me and I relate to the words he projects. Would just be an incredible moment.

Anthony Bourdain. He was a very interesting character as a chef and professional traveler. I would love to sit down and have a meal with him somewhere in the APAC region at his favorite eatery. The conversation would be about all his adventures and to learn from him on enjoying the many food diversities and how to enjoy it.

Bob Roll – former professional cyclist and current cycling commentator. I would love to sit down with Bob and listen to all his cycling stories during his career. He is one of the crazier athletes during his time in the peloton. He has told many stories publicly, but I am sure there are more raunchy ones he would only share in private.

13. What's a skill that isn’t on your resume, but your former bosses would recognize as one of the reasons you are successful?

Dependable. On every project I am on I dedicate myself to providing my best efforts and can be dependent to provide truthfulness and honesty in my work.

14. What’s the best piece of professional advice you’ve ever received? Who gave it and when?

I have been given lots of advice but one comes to mind that sticks out. My good friend Eric Jaquith was with me when I attended my first conference. He advised me besides listening to the sessions, to develop a networking plan for the event. I just started being an independent contractor and he advised me to meet as many quality people as possible for potential business and new relationships. This strategy has worked well as most of my work is on a referral basis from meeting and working with peers I have met at conferences throughout the world.

15. What is the optimal number of people in a team, with you in it? What roles are those people playing?

Let’s say 3. Think of it as a pod model. Of course, I would be the Sourcer. 😊 Then we would have a Recruiter and a Coordinator. I have worked in this model several times and seems to be very fluid with creating a smooth process.

16. What role do you find yourself playing when you join a newly formed team? Can you explain why this happens?

This is a given as I always pursue true sourcing roles. This happens because I have studied and trained to provide sourcing support using many techniques and strategies to hopefully find profiles that Recruiters want to pursue.

17. What’s one industry challenge you don’t actually think will ever get solved?

Using automation tools to spam mass audiences without any quality control. My personal belief is there will always be that percentage of recruiters who will be lazy and do not care about the integrity of their messaging. Like in every profession, there will be these bad recruiters that will hinder the good ones and we will have to continue this battle.

18. When it comes to our work and industry: what scares you most?

The thought of people thinking what we do is easy and be on demand results. With technology having an integral part of what we do, the thought of thinking its easy to deliver people to the opening. I’m in the school of thought of we cannot control what candidates do and do not do. They are people with emotions, lives and random decision making and cannot be controlled. If we can build this understanding to the teams we deliver to then they can be more realistic in their expectations.

19. If you could add a question for the next person to answer, what would it be?

 Tell us about your favorite band or musician and what inspires you to follow and listen to their music?

20. Who would you recommend to do the next 20 Questions With … ?

Barbara Marks. She is so passionate about our space and not afraid to speak what she believes in. She is super knowledgeable and is a voice that should be heard.

Thank you to Ronnie Bratcher for taking 20 Questions for The Brainfood Tribune. Make sure to follow Ronnie on LinkedIn.

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