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Filed Under: Executive Job Search

Published on: Friday, August 02, 2013

The Recruiter, the Bad Apple and the Job

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An executive recruiter friend of mine once told me that whenever he interviews someone for a C-suite role, he structures the interview to learn about their childhood, their upbringing, what's important to them and what they were like in high school and college.

At first, I have to admit some bewilderment upon hearing of his approach. How could our younger years really relate to the key performance indicators of a senior executive role? How could one's place in a family impact their view of an organization? And how could their lack of social skills at an earlier age really matter now during a critical interview for a major leadership role?

 

Published on: Monday, June 17, 2013

While You Were Out…

Posted By: William Flammé, ExecuNet Managing Editor
Filed Under: executive recruiters, executive job search, popular, most read, employment, interviewing, salary, compensation, negotiation, william flammé
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How willing are employers to go beyond salary range for a position? That's what one ExecuNet member had to find out when he learned from a recruiter that he expected too much money for a role that met his qualifications and interest.

Recruiter Andy Borkin, President of Strategic Advancement, suggested the job seeker not worry about salary yet. "You need to concentrate on getting this company to believe you are the only person for this job, and you will do this by talking about your prior accomplishments and how they relate to the company's needs. If they feel you are the right person, there are many ways to get to the total compensation level you seek. It could be through base, bonus, a hiring bonus etc. None of this should be brought up until you get to the end of the process. If asked what you are looking for, just respond with, 'I am sure you will make me a fair and equitable offer.'"

 

 
Business and consumer confidence levels have, in recent years, become increasingly popular barometers of economic health. Whether it's a survey of CEOs' outlooks on growth and hiring, consumers' views on just how much they'll spend ahead of the holiday shopping season, or ExecuNet's own monthly tracking of what executive recruiters see over the horizon, confidence means a lot when uncertainty is high.

 

 
Can you go a year without a salary or in a job where you're not happy? That's about the length of time to find a new executive-level job. Actually, 11.9 months is the combined total of how long respondents to our executive job market intelligence survey said they have already been searching and how much longer they expect it will be before landing a new role.

Before the depth of the recession in 2007 and 2008, expected time in job search was under 10 months. It began to elongate through 2012 and now executives are hopeful that it will drop further under the one-year mark again.

 

 
Contrary to the song, one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch, much like a poor attitude can quickly become contagious in a close working environment. Conversely, happiness can be infectious. That's why when given a choice between an "A-Player" with a bad attitude and a "B-Player" with a good attitude, senior managers overwhelmingly choose disposition before qualifications.

Corporate business leaders are emphasizing the importance of cultural fit and think a positive attitude can have a great effect on team morale, particularly as economic factors cause companies to struggle with employee engagement and motivation.

 

 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today.

In one such teleconference, Tim Tyrell-Smith, an executive search expert, joined me, and a member asked, "What are some ways to effectively use LinkedIn when in job search?" Here's some of what we had to say:

 

Published on: Thursday, March 21, 2013

Having a “Knocked Down” Moment?

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If you stayed up late enough to watch the Oscars a few weeks ago, you might have heard Ben Affleck remark as he accepted the Best Picture award for Argo: "And it doesn't matter how you get knocked down in life because that's going to happen. All that matters is you gotta get up."

A business crisis, lay-off or bad movie called Gigli are all recoverable events, despite the depth of devastation you might feel at the time. The pain and damage are real, but it's often not permanent.

 

Published on: Friday, March 15, 2013

The Timing May Be Just Right for the Entrepreneurs Among Us

Posted By: Joseph Daniel McCool
Filed Under: joseph daniel mccool, executive job search, careers, business growth, entrepreneurs
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Executive leaders are tired, frustrated, stymied and waiting to achieve sustainable business growth so they can get on with their plans — and the next step in their careers. But many of us have been consumed by these feelings for the better part of the past four-and-a-half years. We've been waiting for the next shoe to drop on the global economic or political map — only to realize there's another one further out on the calendar that people have shifted their attention to.

We're living in uncertain times. This much we know. But the question of whether we're paralyzed by inaction or desperation and ruled by our fears is one we must each answer of our own accord.

 

 
There was some good news from February's US Jobs Report. The Labor Department reported that 236,000 jobs were added in February, which is well above the average of 195,000 jobs added over the last three months and the average of about 150,000 added over the last year. Further good news was the unemployment level fell from 7.9 percent to 7.7 percent.

 

Published on: Thursday, March 07, 2013

Are You Looking in the Right Place?

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Executives get where they are by staying a step ahead, by identifying opportunity or seeing the beginning of a trend before the mad rush. If you're looking at what's next for your career, ExecuNet's recent survey of executive recruiters revealed the growth industries and functions for 2013 — areas where they expect to see the most hiring for executive talent.

 

 
In this candid conversation with ExecuNet, innovative branding strategist Russell Stevens tells us about his newest venture, innovation and collaboration.

"There's nothing better than a big idea," he says. His company doesn't try to solve every idea. Instead they focus on solving a very specific problem, using the very best that data and technology have to offer.

 

 
ExecuNet's Job Creation Index dipped in November from +17 to +11. Recruiters lost some of the confidence they had seen prior to the election, as the number of companies expected to add positions in the next six months, declined from 27 percent to 17 percent.

 

 
Networking can definitely be one of those activities that forces people out of their comfort zones. Even though ExecuNet facilitates monthly meetings in dozens of markets to enable executives a more relaxed environment to meet, learn and connect, it can still feel awkward if you're unaccustomed or resistant to networking with strangers.

 

Published on: Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Humility Test

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There is something highly revealing (and also far more predictive of executive performance) in the language executives use to describe what they've done, where they've been and why it mattered to their previous employers. It is their use of the word 'I'; in describing how their organizations overcame adversity, beat the competition or turned things around. And it may exhibit a startling lack of self-awareness and humility for those interested in vetting the kind of leader required by today's enterprises.

 

Published on: Monday, November 12, 2012

Why Job Hunting Shouldn’t Take a Holiday

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With Halloween behind us, attention begins to turn toward the end-of-year holidays, at least here in the US. For many job seekers, there is a perception that hiring activity takes a holiday as well, so we surveyed executive recruiters to learn what they're really doing the last couple months of the year.

 

 
It's not likely you'd cold-call a C-suite executive and audaciously ask for a job at their company, so why would you dial up a recruiter and expect them to find you a position? Yet, search firm recruiters report they get requests all the time from unknown job seekers asking for help, résumé advice, and, of course, jobs.

 

Published on: Friday, September 28, 2012

Enlist Your Job Search Scouts to Help You

Posted By: Robyn Greenspan
Filed Under: robyn greenspan, executive job search, networking, employment, job search scouts
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In the article, Three Things You Can Do to Help Others Find You the Right Job, I made a reference to "job search scouts" as people you've deputized to help you seek new opportunities. An ExecuNet member fairly asked "who those job search scouts are?"

Job search scouts can be categorized into two groups:
  1. People you know — those who want to help
  2. People you don't know — those who can help


 

 
ExecuNet's exclusive Executive Job Creation Index ticked down five points in August to plus five. This is the lowest it has been since last October. This drop reflects the fact that recruiters report only 13 percent of companies will be adding jobs over the next six months, versus 20 percent in our July survey.

 

Published on: Monday, September 17, 2012

Three Things You Can Do to Help Others Find You the Right Job

Posted By: Robyn Greenspan
Filed Under: robyn greenspan, executive job search, networking, resume, connections
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Looking for a new job? Help someone to help you.

I think we've all been on the receiving end of emails or phone calls from friends, former business colleagues, acquaintances or network connections that are positioned similarly: "I just lost my job. Do you know anyone who might be hiring?"

Or, maybe you've sent some of those messages yourself, and felt satisified that you've deputized an army of job search scouts on your behalf.

Do you really expect to get great results that way?

 

 
I participated in my first 5K recently and, in doing so, learned more about myself than I expected. Most specifically, I learned that I don't like running — but that won't prevent me from probably doing it again. There were many parallels between how I trained and completed the 5K and how I approach much of everything else in my life, and during this self-assessment I learned lessons that can be universally applied:

 

Published on: Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Waiting Game

Posted By: Joseph Daniel McCool
Filed Under: leadership, joseph daniel mccool, executive job search, innovation, economy, career planning
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The business world is still waiting for clarity, for certainty and for signs of sustained economic growth.

As the presidential campaign politicizes any debate about whether investment or some level or badly needed financial discipline makes the most sense for the American people, millions of Americans remain jobless and many employers remain stuck in the "idle" position.

 

 
ExecuNet's exclusive Recruiter Confidence Index was flat from June to July and still below 40 percent. What this means to you is recruiters are not seeing a broad based improvement in the overall executive employment market for the near-term. Since 40 percent are confident or very confident — it seems there are pockets for opportunity, but not across the board. When the index climbs over 50 percent is an indicator or a more broad-based improvement in the executive hiring market.

 

 
Nearly half (49%) of the executive recruiters surveyed by ExecuNet revealed that executives with proven innovation skills were hard to find, compared to other skills, and 31 percent said companies were willing to pay a premium for innovative talent — even in today's job market.

With product lifecycles declining rapidly, increased global competition and pressure from changing customer needs, executives who have demonstrated they can challenge business assumptions and find the areas of opportunities in current business models are in demand. We counsel executives every day that they have to do more than claim they were "innovative" on their résumés. They need to show a quantifiable history of innovating and its impact on their previous organizations.

 

 
ExecuNet's exclusive Job Creation Index ticked up slightly in July to +10 from +8 in June, showing slightly higher expected growth in executive job creation for the next six months.

Executive recruiters continued to report that there are pockets of opportunity in the current marketplace with 20 percent companies looking to add executive jobs in the next six months and another 25 percent of companies who are likely to freezing hiring for the next six months.

 

 
If you remember rotary phones, have VHS tapes in your home, and found fax machines revolutionary, then you might have encountered age discrimination in recent job search experiences. Forty-two percent of the executives surveyed by ExecuNet believed their age would negatively affect their ability to land their next position, and they were, on average, 51 years old.

 

 
High-achieving leaders find networking six times more effective for creating career options than online job postings, according to our hot-off-the presses research from ExecuNet's 20th annual Executive Job Market Intelligence Report. Further, networking is the activity executive recruiters maintain to have the greatest success finding candidates.

 

 
"I am thinking of leaving my organization," reported roughly three in every 10 marketing executives surveyed for ExecuNet's 20th annual Executive Job Market Intelligence Report. Despite a couple years of salary decreases, their organizational spirits remained high, but now that compensation is bouncing back a bit, they can endure no more and are ready to walk.

 

 
When executives began their most recent job search, they thought it would take just over six months to land their new position, according to ExecuNet research. But when a new job didn't materialize after that period of time, our survey respondents estimated it would take almost another half-year before their search efforts were effective.

On average, it had been 6½ years since these executives had last been in a job search, and a lot has changed since mid-2005: The unemployment rate was at 5 percent, and in ExecuNet's 2006 Executive Job Market Intelligence Report, our analysis focused on the high demand for executive talent. Here's what we wrote back then:

 

Published on: Thursday, March 22, 2012

Successful Executive Networking: It’s All About What You Say to People You Don’t Know

Posted By: Tucker Mays and Bob Sloane
Filed Under: executive job search, networking, resume, tucker mays, bob sloane, bio
Comments (1)
 
It is estimated that 75 to 80 percent of all jobs come from networking, and not from a published/posted job lead or a recruiter. Unfortunately, most executive job seekers do not have the skills to substantially expand their networks in order to find a new opportunity in a reasonable time frame. Most make fundamental networking mistakes. As a result, the job search takes longer and longer. In most cases, ineffective networking effectively is the primary reason that executives, particularly those over age 50 take well over a year or longer to find their next job.

 

Published on: Monday, February 27, 2012

Re-Discovering Your Career Passion

Posted By: Ford Myers
Filed Under: executive job search, engagement, goals, passion, ford myers, career, priorities
Comments (1)
 
Do you ever feel like you've lost touch with the enthusiasm and passion you once felt about your career?

Remember when you were just starting out at your first job, or you were a recent graduate? You probably thought that any job would be available to you, that every employer would want to hire you. You were excited about your prospects and believed that you had something wonderful to share.

But now that you've been in the work world for quite a while and have had a series of jobs with several different companies, have you become cynical or resigned in your work attitude? Are you unsure as to which direction to turn next? As a professional career coach, I have found that this loss of career passion and enthusiasm is very common, and it's one of my most troubling observations. To address this problem, I developed an amazingly simple exercise.

 

Published on: Thursday, February 16, 2012

Is Green Good or Bad for Business@f66

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It all depends on how your company operationally defines "green" and the ensuing strategies. Where it makes the most sense for business and careers is to tie "green" to "efficiency," and these ExecuNet members in the Operations Roundtable shared their experiences when asked whether going green helped or hurt their businesses.

 

Published on: Thursday, February 02, 2012

Leadership is Transferable Across Industries

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An ExecuNet member who was trying to transition into a new industry finally networked to an interview with the president of his target company. The president was resistant to hiring this executive because he didn't have the experience, know the language or have the contacts in this particular sector.

"Where do you rank your company in this industry?" the ExecuNet member asked the president.
"We're the best," the president quickly replied.
"Then why would you want to hire from a weaker competitor?"

 

Published on: Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Six-Figure Hotline: Network Past Education Bias

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As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today.

An ExecuNet member asked: "After over 15+ years of a successful career as a procurement specialist, considered a lobbyist/partner within the law firms where I was affiliated in DC, I am changing careers to business development and want to work in-house. Although I have worked with corporate CEOs, Presidents and Emirs, I find that my lack of formal education stops my application when it hits HR. I'm frustrated because in my field it's about delivery and not about your degree. How do I overcome this challenge?"

 

 
Ever wish you had access to an executive recruiter just to ask that one question? ExecuNet members routinely email us their questions, and we tap into the minds of executive recruiters in our network to get their unadulterated feedback. "One ExecuNet member wrote: What can I expect from a recruiter when I'm negotiating salary and compensation? After all, doesn't he work for the hiring company?"

Executive recruiter Nick Corcodilos, offered his thoughts on the topic. Here's an excerpt of what he had to say:
This question is so common that I include an entire section about it in my PDF book, How to Work with Headhunters ... and how to make headhunters work for you.

 

Published on: Thursday, January 19, 2012

It’s Okay to Act Your Age

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I'm a few months behind reading the New York Times Magazine, so I only recently saw the September 8th issue with the article about the ironworkers rebuilding the World Trade Center.

One of my favorite childhood memories was of my father taking me to his job as a union plumber during the construction of the World Trade Center in the early 70s. The buildings were so unfinished that we rode the freight elevator to the top where it was nothing but steel beams and rough flooring — the windows had not yet been installed.

 

Published on: Friday, January 13, 2012

Do You Know Where Your Career Plan Is?

Posted By: Robyn Greenspan
Filed Under: robyn greenspan, execunet, executive job search, hidden job market
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Whether you are in active job search or just keeping your options open, it's important to have a map for where you want to go. If you are employed and your New Year's resolution was to get a new job, you should visualize where you will be in the summer, as recent ExecuNet research with recruiters revealed that it takes, on average, seven months to transition.

But where to start? That's one of the most common questions we get at ExecuNet. At the executive level, you're less likely to find your next job by going online and sending out résumés; just a fraction of $200K positions are publicly posted anyway.

 

Published on: Thursday, January 05, 2012

A New Career for the New Year@f55

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The close of one year and the beginning of another is typically a time of assessment: analyzing what you've done and determining where you'd next like to be. That evaluation can be in the form of deep thinking and looking inside oneself or standardized assessments that scientifically measure strengths and talents, and can reveal potential new career directions.

 

Published on: Thursday, December 22, 2011

Gift Yourself a New Job

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Job seekers mistakenly slow down their searches toward year-end, but there is still hiring activity for companies that have talent needs. Further, networking and career planning are not seasonal events, and holiday parties are good opportunities to learn who's doing what where. (Keep the résumé at home when socializing!)

 

Published on: Wednesday, November 16, 2011

7 Truths of Career Success

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1. The most qualified candidate does not necessarily get the job offer.
Many times, candidates with lesser qualifications get job offers simply because they've prepared and presented themselves in a more compelling way. They "package" themselves better, with an outstanding portfolio of career documents and oral presentation skills. The winning candidate is the one who knows how to tie his or her achievements, strengths and assets directly to the employer's needs, problems and challenges.

In a difficult employment landscape, strong qualifications and accomplishments are necessary, but not sufficient, to find a job you love and earn what you deserve. Don't be fooled into believing that the work world is a meritocracy — it's not. In the end, it's the best self-marketer who gets the job.

 

Published on: Thursday, November 03, 2011

Executive Recruiters Offer Insights to Compete in our Challenging Economy

Posted By: Joseph Daniel McCool
Filed Under: joseph daniel mccool, executive recruiters, executive job search
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Mixed economic signals continue to hamper executive-level hiring in many industries, but the findings of ExecuNet's monthly survey of 145 executive recruiters reveal there are five specific steps executive job seekers can take to connect with career opportunities – even in this economy.

 

Published on: Tuesday, September 27, 2011

This is Getting to be a Drag

Posted By: Dave Opton
Filed Under: executive job search, networking, dave opton, resume, executive coach
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Ever since I can remember, there has been a factoid making its way around the career management world about how long someone should anticipate their job search will take. It goes something like: You should plan your search to take about one month for every $10,000 you seek in salary.

In talking with ExecuNet members, this is a subject that comes up with great frequency. Certainly not surprising, as most executives tend to be type A and focus on objectives to be reached within a specific timeframe and get pretty impatient if/when it doesn't look like that's happening.

In truth, I believe this is one of the major reason why we all find the search process so frustrating.

 

 
I recently spoke with a high-level search firm recruiter and he shared a story about an executive he called a perpetual "bridesmaid" — the one who always comes in second to the candidate who ultimately gets the offer.

On paper, this executive was outstanding and articulated his value well during the interview, however, the recruiter told me, the candidate needed to get his act together and make an effort to spiff up his appearance.

 

Published on: Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Six-Figure Hotline: Résumé Version Control

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As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today.

In a recent teleconference where Bob Hueglin an executive career coach and ExecuNet meeting facilitator in Dallas, Texas joined me, a caller asked, "What is the best approach to brand and sell your skills when they are diversified across areas like marketing, business channels and so forth; do I create three different résumés, or do I approach this in a different way?"

Résumé construction and the best ways for executives to brand themselves are areas where ExecuNet has devoted a great deal of resources and has many experts to call upon. Now more than ever before, how one has branded himself is a critical aspect of the job search process and is an area members frequently inquire about. For those who missed the teleconference, available on demand, here's what we suggested to the caller:

 

Published on: Tuesday, August 16, 2011

People-Challenge-Balance-Worth

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When you talk to anyone trying to make a career change these days it doesn't take long before you realize that while there are lots of the questions being asked, the answers vary significantly.

To many of us this comes as a very frustrating and unhappy surprise. This is especially true for those seeking executive-level jobs, since most come from positions of executive leadership and are very used to asking questions and getting answers that don't start with "well, that depends..."

In short, I think the discomfort comes from the fact that the dynamics of making a career change are, at its core, made up of a process that is, despite all the hoopla around assessment instruments, interviewing, résumés, etc., based on the subjective judgment of both the executive recruiters and the candidates.

 

 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today.

In a recent teleconference where HR and executive recruiting expert Jennifer McClure of Unbridled Talent joined me a caller asked: "How does one discover access to the hidden job market, gain access and then become a lead candidate for some of those positions?" This is a topic that ExecuNet members frequently inquire about, one of those timeless job search questions, so I thought I'd share what we had to say.

 

Published on: Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Don’t Expect a Recruiter to Meet Your Needs

Comments (52)
 
Ever wish you had access to an executive recruiter just to ask that one question? Members routinely email us their questions, and we tap into the minds of executive recruiters in our network to get their unadulterated feedback.

One ExecuNet member wrote: "I haven't used a recruiter ever before and don't know how to connect with one who could meet my needs. I've been in the computer business for over 15 years and am looking for another senior position in a small- to medium- sized business in my area. How can I find the appropriate recruiter to help me?"

Executive recruiter Nick Corcodilos, in his usual straightforward manner, offered his thoughts on the topic. Here's an excerpt of what he had to say:

 

Published on: Wednesday, June 15, 2011

When You’re Feeling Needy, Give to Your Network

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When you're looking for a job, the first instinct is to call your A-list and ask if they know of any openings. However, that's not networking; it's need-working. What you should do is separate yourself from your emotions; stop the impulse to collect business cards and ask yourself, "What can I do to help people in my network?"

 

 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today.

In a recent teleconference a caller said: "I am in a job search now for a position as a principal in an elementary or middle school. There are so many budgetary cuts going on in education, locally and nationally, that I feel it makes sense to revamp my résumé and reflect on how my skills and experience could transfer to a well-paying job outside of K-12 schools. Any and all insights and suggestions are welcome."

 

Published on: Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The More Things Change…

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If you remember waiting for the Sunday classified sections to check job listings, then you certainly appreciate the speed and ease in which information is now accessed online. But, for executives, most new opportunities are found through their connections to others, and ExecuNet CEO and founder Dave Opton points out that technology is no substitution for building strong personal relationships.

 

Published on: Friday, May 13, 2011

Tell Them Why They Want You

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Ever wish you had access to an executive recruiter just to ask that one question you've been wanting answered? Members routinely email us their questions, and we tap into our network of executive recruiters for their thoughts. This insight into the minds of executive recruiters is often rather fascinating.

One ExecuNet member wrote: "I have a background in sales and marketing with high-profile accounts. I recently became certified in Lean Manufacturing to complement prior VOC [voice-of-the-customer] training. I believe it gives me insight into offering more targeted solutions to clients. Additionally, my MBA will be finished in six weeks. I would like to go into sales or consulting for a business solutions-oriented company, as that is where my true passion lies. Are there any recommendations for a starting point?"

Executive recruiter Nick Corcodilos, in his usual straightforward manner, offered his thoughts on the topic. Here's an excerpt of what he had to say:

 

Published on: Thursday, April 28, 2011

Six-Figure Hotline: Network Your Way into the Dance

Posted By: Dave Opton
Filed Under: executive job search, networking, dave opton, six-figure hotline
Comments (1)
 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today. Whether you are in a job search, thinking about changing positions, or want to learn how to strengthen your success in your current position, this weekly teleconference is designed to provide you the support you need to reach your goals.

Recently, in one such teleconference, a caller said: "I have been performing in the middle management ranks now for a number of years and feel I have demonstrated many executive qualities in my prior experiences. The problem is I keep hearing ‘they are looking for someone who was a vice president before.'"

 

 
It was a commonly held belief that unemployed job seekers had a tougher time getting attention from executive recruiters, but that's not necessarily true anymore, says ExecuNet Executive Director Lauryn Franzoni. "Recruiters are having — in their own way — as tough a time in this marketplace as out-of-work candidates are," she says.

In this short video, Franzoni suggests some powerful tips for how executives — in any career stage — can leverage their marketplace knowledge in building relationships with search firm recruiters.

 

 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today. Whether you are in a job search, thinking about changing positions, or want to learn how to strengthen your success in your current position, this weekly teleconference is designed to provide you the support you need to reach your goals.

Recently, in one such teleconference, I was asked about candidacies getting flattened by the "You are overqualified" objection. The caller said: "I am trying to re-direct my career from doing turnarounds to becoming COO with an early stage company. Invariably, this means working with younger individuals. It seems they buy into me on paper and on the phone, but when they find out how old I am when I show up I am suddenly 'overqualified.' Maybe it's just my imagination, but..."

 

Published on: Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Six-Figure Hotline

Comments (2)
 
As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today. Whether you are in a job search, thinking about changing positions, or want to learn how to strengthen your success in your current position, this weekly teleconference is designed to provide you the support you need to reach your goals.

Recently, in one such teleconference, I was asked about companies insisting that candidates meet every single requirement that they are posting or "don't bother." Should executives still bother to submit applications to these companies if they have 90 percent of the desired qualifications?

 

Published on: Friday, February 25, 2011

Can a Job Loss Act as Intervention?

Posted By: Robyn Greenspan
Filed Under: robyn greenspan, executive job search, networking, strategy, transition, résumé
Comments (0)
 
More than a few laid-off executives have expressed the sense of relief that accompanied their terminations. But that's just one of an amalgam of feelings that often includes anger, disbelief and grief. Self-care is particularly important during this time, with many experts saying that a short, temporary "quiet period" helps replenish positive energy and calibrate focus.

Executives in this situation have identified two specific sources of their relief: no longer stressing over job insecurity, and a new opportunity to find their passion and reinvent themselves. Many have been in careers of default, starting as a young employee in a certain industry and then moving up as skill sets and experience develops. Not many children dream about growing up to be the “Senior Vice President of Copper Widget Procurement" so some executives find their layoff to be liberating.

 

Published on: Monday, February 14, 2011

Courtship and the Job Search

Posted By: Robyn Greenspan
Filed Under: robyn greenspan, executive job search, interview, bradley richardson, candidate
Comments (0)
 
In a response to an ExecuNet member's question about not being bothersome to the hiring decision-makers, yet continue to show interest executive recruiter Bradley Richardson likened working with recruiters to dating.

Richardson says there is a very fine balance candidates should maintain: eager, but not desperate; "in-demand" but hard to get, particularly when it comes to follow-up. How much is too much? How long should I wait?

"What's the difference between persistent and obnoxious? — and believe me there is a difference!" says Richardson. "In relationships it is easy. Think somewhere between the three-day rule as the norm and a 'restraining order' as the outer limit. Interviews are tougher to judge, even though many hiring managers feel they are being stalked like some jilted high school crush."

Here are Richardson's general rules of thumb for following up and staying on a recruiter's mind, without driving him out of his mind.

 

 
President Obama's declaration in his State of the Union address: "This is our generation's Sputnik moment," sent me rushing to Wikipedia, where I learned it was his call to action for innovation. Just as NASA mobilized resources and energy to intensify efforts and be first in the race to space, he said so should Americans take on the challenge to out-innovate the rest of the world.

In this short video interview with ExecuNet's President and Chief Economist Mark Anderson, he explains how our "Sputnik moments" can be tied to individual BHAGS, and three ways to innovate in this job market.

 

Published on: Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Six-Figure Hotline

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As part of ExecuNet membership, I conduct a weekly teleconference called Six-Figure Hotline where members call in to ask the questions keeping them up at night, and to gain market and trend insight from the career experts who join me in talking about issues that are important to executives today. Whether you are in a job search, thinking about changing positions, or want to learn how to strengthen your success in your current position, this weekly teleconference is designed to provide you the support you need to reach your goals.

Recently, in one such teleconference, I was asked about recruiters having a "square peg, square hole" mindset. The caller said: "They know that companies value and need diversity, but are afraid to put forth candidates who have excellent credentials, experiences and leadership — because their client (the company hiring) tells them only to bring them candidates that are ‘square peg and square hole.'"

He said, "This seems more prevalent among the large retained search firms than the boutique firms, and they do get some of the best assignments. Do you have any advice on how to change the large retained search mindset?"

 

 
An impressive GPA and a high IQ certainly can't hurt in today's job market, but they're no guarantee of getting an interview, much less a job. But a high CQ (cultural intelligence quotient) is an increasingly sought-after capability by many employers. In today's competitive job market, candidates who demonstrate cultural intelligence have an edge for landing a job in many businesses. Even if the job doesn't require any international travel, managers and HR departments are realizing the importance of having culturally savvy employees who can dynamically meet the challenges of serving a diverse customer base at home and abroad as well as becoming effective participants of culturally diverse teams.

Cultural intelligence is defined as the capability to function effectively across national, ethnic and organizational cultures. You've heard about IQ and EQ. CQ stems from this same body of research on the various forms of intelligence needed to be a successful in today's workforce. CQ is a set of capabilities and skills proven to give employees and their organizations a competitive edge in our shrinking world.

 

Published on: Tuesday, January 18, 2011

It’s About Giving, Not About Getting

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Unless you have been in a time capsule, when it comes to managing a successful job search, everyone knows that the most effective strategy is networking. Saying the word reminds me of the conversations I used to have in a former life around the subject of performance appraisals. We all agreed that it was needed, but nobody liked them. On the other hand, nobody has come up with something better either.

For over the 23 years ExecuNet has been around, 70 percent of the members we have talked to who have made a change say it was networking that was the key for them. People sometimes think that since we are always trying to drive home this message that somehow we have a plug and play answer on making it work for them, and preferably making it work like yesterday! Would that we could!

What we do try to do, however, is not just talk about it, but put all sorts of resources together to not only show them how, but also try to provide them (both online and off) with the ways and means to implement a plan effectively.

 

Published on: Friday, November 12, 2010

Job Search: Take Two

Posted By: Dave Opton
Filed Under: execunet, executive job search, networking, dave opton, executive coach
Comments (16)
 
Ever since I can remember, there has been a "factoid" making its way around the career management world about how long someone should plan their job search will take. What I can't recall and never remember seeing is the source from which this "factoid" came. In any event, if you're in a job search, you have probably heard it, too. It goes something like: You should plan your search to take about one month for every $10,000 you seek in salary.

I haven't the slightest idea, nor have I ever seen statistics that indicate whether this rule of thumb is right, wrong or anything in between, and I have been roaming around the career management space since (dare I say it?) 1961.

That said, in talking with ExecuNet members, this is a subject that comes up with great frequency. Certainly not surprising, as most executives tend to be more type A than B; as such, they focus on objectives to be reached within a specific timeframe and get pretty impatient if and when it doesn't look like that is happening. In addition, as leaders, they are used to being in control (more or less), and if things are not going the way they want them to and fast enough, they can make the needed changes.

 

 
There are a number of ways to perform a job search. There's the old way that many use still today. Some call it the shotgun approach: blasting résumés as far as the eye can see. Filling up the inboxes of recruiters certainly feels productive.

Is this you? Are you using a very general strategy to find a very specific job? The biggest fear I have for you is that this might have worked in the past when times were better and the job search community accepted a more passive effort. Being an independent person, you try that approach again — in this tough and significantly more competitive market.

If so, I'd like to fill your mind with a few practical tips to get you thinking with more precision. A more precise strategy will be more efficient, and, in the end, much more productive.

 

 
Recently, I had the good fortune to attend a dinner gathering in New York hosted by John Sumser the founder and CEO of Interbiznet and currently the editor of HR Examiner, a weekly publication which focuses on the people, technology, ideas and careers of senior leaders in human resources and human capital, all subjects on which he is a respected expert. It is a newsletter I always look forward to reading.

I was fortunate enough to be seated next to Peter Clayton, the voice and engine behind Total Picture Radio, which is interested in career trends and thought leadership in that arena. It is a site I would suggest you visit regularly.

 

 
You've probably not accepted that as an excuse to resist change and stymie innovation from a colleague, so why use it for your job search? In case you hadn't noticed, the old ways of looking for a job have dramatically changed, but the good news is some of those old school tools are still quite useful.

ExecuNet has witnessed job search transformation over the last 23 years, and contributing editor Marji McClure and I outlined the evolution. Here are some tips to get you started:

 

 
In ExecuNet's July survey of executive recruiters, we asked them about their most effective resources for identifying candidates, and not surprisingly, networking — and activities related to connecting to search consultants and their firms — dominated the list.

But building relationships can't be rushed; they are nurtured over time and nourished with trust. Unfortunately, many wait until they are in job search to start connecting with recruiters, hoping to quickly develop a meaningful bond that will translate into a paycheck.

 

Published on: Thursday, July 29, 2010

Get In, Get Out

Comments (1)
 
Interest in interim executive positions has risen in the last few years; most recently, 7-in-10 senior-level leaders surveyed by ExecuNet were considering or may consider part-time roles in their career planning — up from 57 percent in 2006. ExecuNet contributing editor Marji McClure explored the advantages of interim opportunities for our member publication, CareerSmart Advisor, and found that while still more prominent in Europe, interim posts are increasingly gaining traction in the US with both organizations and executives for a variety of reasons.

 

 
Last week, Liam Denning wrote a very cogent article for the Wall Street Journal "Heard on the Street" column that explained year-on-year comparisons, as the usual measure of progress, are not as relevant today as in the past — particularly when the year in comparison was a real "downer."

"Up 16 percent in housing prices from last year" does not tell the story when prices have flat-lined since May 2009.

 

Published on: Monday, June 21, 2010

Job Search Success Wooden Style

Posted By: Dave Opton
Filed Under: executive job search, dave opton, john wooden, best practices
Comments (11)
 
Whether you ever played basketball, or any other sport for that matter, it would not be hard to find anyone in the business world who both knew of and greatly admired Coach John Wooden who recently passed away at age 99. He certainly was a man who was looked to by many as not just someone who was a master strategist and motivator but maybe more importantly as someone who demonstrated what real leadership is all about at a very high level for a very long time.

If you have never seen Wooden's Pyramid of Success, it is very much worth a look and, I thought, has a great deal to offer anyone who finds themselves in the middle of trying to manage a job change at a time where the environment is challenging to say the least.

 

Finding new ways to do business is always a challenge, but for success in an ever-changing world, business leaders today must be willing to try new things and remain extremely flexible. Read what some of the world's greatest innovators had to say in this ExecuNet exclusive.


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