What It’s Like to Be a Judge on a Reality Show Like Top Recruiter

top recruiter, reality, tv

Earlier this year I had the wonderful opportunity to appear as a guest judge in a reality show for recruiters and job seekers called Top Recruiter filmed in Miami. I was able to truly appreciate and understand the planning, development and coordination that went into the filming of my epsiode held which was shot at sunset along the beautiful Miami skyline. It was a gala event honoring a group of game changers in the HR, recruiting and job seeker industries. Chris Lavoie, the executive producer of the show is truly top notch in production of everything. No detail went unnoticed including the champagne which flowed long into the evening. Work, networking and business happened at the event. I met and connect with some amazing industry professionals. I got to see Chris’s attention for detail in shooting the reality series first hand as a judge for the episode. Top Recruiter is in its third season. You can click here to watch the trailer of the new season which kicks off September 9, 2014.

Being a business woman that works and lives primarily on the internet, I work from home. While I attend my share of conferences and events, being on reality television was and is a new experience for me. It required hair, a spray tan, mani, pedi, professional makeup and most importantly the right dress for the occasion to really make a statement on screen.

When it came to filming the reality show, I wasn’t nervous that I would screw up or say the wrong thing. I am interviewed on camera and on the fly when I travel to speak at conferences and events. I’ve interviewed live on Fox News, Huffington Post and CBS nationally. I had great real life media training hosting a live streaming internet television show for three seasons myself. You have to go with the flow and expect the unexpected while coming off confident, knowledgeable and professional looking. I was more concerned about what to wear at an event that was not a conference or speaking gig. I wear a usual suit or standard grey belted dress for those occasions. This was a black tie affair, and I wanted to look my best on camera and in Miami.

What I Wore for Top Recruiter Season 3

Unfortunately, I’m not much of a shopper and prefer to shop online. After two unsuccessful deliveries and returns in search of the perfect dress at Nordstroms, I had to find another way. Enter in my new go to clothing rental and delivery service for use in times like these called Rent the Runway.

jessica-miller-merrell-top-recruiterRent the Runway is an online service where you can pick your size, style and date to have clothing and accessories delivered directly to your door. You can rent designer clothing at a fraction of the price. You wear it once and then drop it off where it is shipped back and delivered to the next person who might just also be featured on a reality show series like me.

I love Rent the Runway for so many reasons but also because they also have a mobile app making it extremely easy to shop quickly. You rent a dress, pick a delivery date, and they send you two different sizes just in case it’s not the perfect fit. You can pick multiple dresses for as many wardrobe changes you have for your event. I selected a red dress completely out of my comfort zone, an accessory of a gold clutch and earrings to match my heels I snagged on clearance at Nordstroms. For the entire look from RTR, I paid just over $230.00 which was much less than I would pay for the dress at retail forever pricing.

Dress Rental for the Gala

Rent the Runway has been a life saver not just for events like the Top Recruiter Gala filming but also for dinner parties and when traveling. I order the clothes from RTR and have them shipped directly to my destination and no longer have to worrying about checking my luggage and thus, having my bags and professional event attire lost for all eternity. They offer jewelry, purses, rings and clothing for most any occasion including work wear, bridal wear and bridesmaid dresses. If you like what you rent, they offer the option to purchase the items you love. Most importantly, they offer real sizes for real women. I am not nor do I think I have ever been a size 2. I am a size 16. They offer rental sizes up to 22 making the opportunity to look glam for nearly every body. That’s important because women of every size deserve to feel and look beautiful whatever and wherever they are going. Also going dress shopping when you are a size 16 really sucks mostly because your size is never available at the store so you take a gamble and special order online.

For those who are concerned about things like fit and if the dress runs large or small, Rent the Runway customers leave really great reviews and photos showing just how fabulous they looked. This has been extremely helpful in selecting clothing. New users receive $25 off their first order by clicking here.

2014-08-15 18.37.11-2Using this service has really helped me get out of my comfort zone when it comes to clothes for specialty events. Just a few weeks ago, I rented a totally glam sparkle number (seen to the right) which I work to a fundraising gala for a non profit I support called Heartline Oklahoma. Same gold shoes I wore for Top Recruiter and purse even but different vintage earrings. I looked amazing and stood out in all the right ways. It didn’t hurt that I got a new haircut and highlight and had my stylist Addison (@hairequalslife) do a blowout and straightening.

I’m really excited to see this season’s Top Recruiter. Other members of the Blogging4Jobs editorial cast make appearances including @willrecruits and my best friend, @ray_anne. Look for me in the killer red dress from RTR with my Google Glass in the series premier of Top Recruiter coming next week. You can also check out Rent the Runway and save $25 on your first order by clicking here.

Interested in learning more about my HR Technology and Product Reviews on Blogging4Jobs by clicking here

 FTC Disclosure: This review contains affiliate links. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

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Jessica Miller-Merrell

Learn more about Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, the founder of Workology, a workplace HR resource, and the host of the Workology Podcast. More of her blogs can be found here.

Reader Interactions


  1. torin says

    and you looked fantastic. Not only that, you were the first person I met/spoke with during the event. That impression was a great start to a great evening and what has been several great months of contacts since. Good to see that “temporary” fashion solutions do still exist and that you had the enthusiasm to give them props.


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