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Peter Tulau, Director at AltoPartners, shares his “insider’s view” on the preparation good executive search consultants do to optimize the 60-minute interview time and get the most pertinent information from candidates during the executive search interview. As you prepare for your next executive interview, consider the crucial questions executive search consultants will ask themselves as they evaluate candidates’ suitability for the position.

The Executive Search Interview – a Search Consultant’s Perspective

Most directors would describe their first non-executive board role as a major professional milestone, a terrific growth opportunity and something they are very glad they did, even though it represented a significant commitment. Given the demands of a board position — 20-30 days a year up to nine or more years — it pays to carefully weigh the pros and cons of a given opportunity. 

As professionals age, each individual is accountable to apply their intellect to mitigate the risks associated with ageism. Since the last publication, Warren Buffett, at his annual shareholders meeting noted that one of his top executives is 92, and still running one of his largest business units. This statement speaks for itself.

It’s easy to get discouraged when conducting an executive job search. As a lower-level manager or professional, perhaps it seemed that job opportunities abounded. But now, at the executive level, the available positions are harder to come by and it can be difficult to be privy to information about vacancies.

The executive career goal of becoming a board director is one that is both highly coveted and highly challenging to actualize. Board member positions offer directors the opportunity to use their wealth of experience to tackle intellectual business challenges and influence the success of a chosen company. Despite there being many routes into the boardroom, below are our universal top tips for better positioning yourself for new board opportunities:

At the outset, let me clarify that this post articulates a maverick approach to the executive interview follow-up! While most of you would have read articles aplenty about polite thank you notes, a frequency which is not annoying et al, my experience suggests that the approach needs to be completely revamped!

As an executive, your job search strategy is uniquely different. Unlike mid-level or entry level professionals, you cannot easily extract an extensive list of job openings from a simple online search.

Whenever you anticipate launching a high-level job or career transition, you undoubtedly hope it will go smoothly. However, only a “Pollyanna-type” personality would blithely assume that such a result will occur every time. You don’t need to be a hard-core pessimist, of course, but being prepared can save you a lot of grief in the long run. 

Executive job-seekers of all functions have been taught to pull together a portfolio which sells the technical, financial and operational skills that they have accumulated over their years of experience.  Whatever the next destination of your career path is, ensuring you stand out among other candidates with similar experiences is the only way to get there.ceo job personality traits

The challenges facing an executive who believes the time is approaching to consider a career change can be both awkward and potentially risky. How much/how little one should say - when and to whom? These challenges are more pressing if one is thrust into such a situation – and require care and skill to do the right things and make the best decisions. 

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