For any senior-level executive, networking and building relationships with executive recruiters should be a key part of your strategic career plan. As a member of BlueSteps, you have exclusive access to a comprehensive database of AESC member recruiters – but what is the best way to make contact or gain visibility from the search community?

Navigating executive search consultant networking can be a tricky business, so to help you put your best foot forward, here’s our top advice for those hoping to connect…

executive recruiters

Remember you are not the client

Many executive recruiters get contacted by candidates who are hoping that the recruiter will find them a new position. With retained executive search, it is important to remember that the recruiter’s client is the hiring organisation – not the candidate. If your experience, background, qualifications, culture fit or unique value doesn’t exactly match the brief they have received from their client, they will have nothing to offer you. However, by creating a helpful and well-informed first impression, they might think of you again when something more suited arrives on their desk.


Offer Executive Recruiters a Mutually Beneficial Relationship

One way to create a great impression with executive recruiters is to be offer suggestions within your network and recommend appropriate friends, colleagues and other connections. If you have been contacted for a role that just isn’t the right fit, suggesting alternatives can be a great way to build a mutually beneficial relationship, become memorable and could result in the favour being returned for you in the future.


Make Sure Your Networking Is Targeted

Executive recruiters can often be repelled by “spam” or mass emails sent by executive candidates who are not even from within their industry of specialization. When sending an email to executive recruiters, go for quality over quantity. Take time to learn the recruiter’s background and experience so that you are more able to convey your unique value proposition and relevance. Executive recruiters can spot a copy-and-paste email in an instant and are unlikely to respond.


Increase Your Visibility

By establishing yourself as a thought leader and expert in your industry, you will increase your chances of appearing on the radar of the executive search community. There are many ways in which you can increase your visibility as an executive including writing thought leadership articles, guest speaking at public events, participating on live panel discussions relating to your area of specialism, and strategically curating your online presence and personal brand to highlight your skills and experience.


Be Ready

While investing time in strategic networking with executive search consultants, it is also vital to prepare yourself for if or when a new opportunity does arise. Make sure that your executive career documents, including your resume/CV, bio and LinkedIn profile are all polished and up-to-date, and that you have perfected your “elevate speech” to enable you to succinctly and successfully describe your professional history, value and goals. Executive recruiters are not resume writers or career coaches. Asking them for help with your career documents or strategy will negatively impact your first impression. If you would like assistance with these professional documents, executive interview techniques or career strategy, BlueSteps has a team of world-class executive career advisors ready to partner with you for your career success. Contact to find out more.


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