Hiring Hack: You Should Send the Mail, Not the Recruiters

Important role open in your org. You think you IDed the perfect hire. Strong product manager at rival company known for her combination of tech talent and EQ. A great blogger with social media presence. A designer friend of yours has worked with her and vouches for her greatness. If you could get her over to your team, wow, it could be a gamechanger.

And then you let your recruiter send the introductory email. WRONG.
For any targeted hire – especially senior hires – you should always send the first email yourself. It’s fine to cc: your recruiter for follow-up but for if you have any credibility, make initial contact directly.
Which of these are you more likely to respond to?
“Hi, my name is Alex and I’m a recruiter at BigCo. We’ve heard great things about you and want to tell you about our Director of Revenue role. Can we schedule a phone call?”
“Hi, my name is Steve and I’m the VP of Revenue at BigCo. I’ve heard great things about you and read your blog frequently. There’s an open role on my team – Director of Revenue. I think you’d have a real impact over here. I’ve cc:ed our recruiter Alex. Can I ask him to follow-up to give you more information?” [Note – if it’s a really high level position or urgent hire, skip recruiter and proceed right to a meeting with you]
I’ve ignored variations of the first one my whole career. The few times I received a variation on the latter, I always responded, even if just out of politeness. 
If you care, send the email yourself.