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We all face some level of anxiety over the difficult US economy; whether it be over the health and vitality of the enterprise we work for, or simply for our own job security. Senior executives probably feel an equal amount of both, trying hard to drive bottom-line profitability without driving themselves out the door in the process.




What can Organizations learn from Change Management in the Political Sphere?

On a cold February day in Springfield, Illinois, three years ago, a young US senator announced he was going to run for the presidency. The country and the world faced huge challenges, he said. “We know the challenges...We’ve talked about them for years…What’s stopped us from meeting these challenges is not the absence of sound policies and sensible plans. What’s stopped us is the failure of leadership”. Now that he is president, Barack Obama knows how difficult it is to bring about successful change.


Knowing how to Evaulate Executive Job Opportunities is an Essential Component to any Successful Career Management Strategy
Contrary to what many would like to believe, size can matter…and for those senior level executives with “big fish” status within a small company, it may be tough to downsize that standing if moving to a larger organization. But in order to honestly evaluate offers, you need to decide what’s more important to you – maintaining C-level status or joining a company that has less to offer in way of title, but more in other areas.

The Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC), who own and operate BlueSteps, hosts two annual conferences each year, bringing together AESC member retained executive search consultants. This year, the America’s Conference attracted over 130 consultants from around the world, who discussed key global business issues and the current challenges and opportunities for the retained executive search industry. Each presentation and panel discussion was well received, and here we focus on Ian Davis’s review of ‘The New Normal: Challenges and Opportunities’.

Finance Salaries Soar Once Again

In a recent article by the Financial Times entitled ”Western Bank Rivals Chase Asia Talent”, the authors provide yet another indication that the talent war within the financial service industry continues to rage, and this time Asia Pacific is the main battle ground:

“US and European banks are offering huge pay packages to hire top bankers in the Asia-Pacific region, in a sign that the compensation curbs pledged by financial groups after the crisis are already being eroded.”

Faced with a choice between offers of employment, some on the executive level might give a high salary more weight during the decision-making process, but long-term incentives can be a truer value proposition, particularly in a shifting economic landscape.

For example, deferral plans are fast becoming a popular executive benefit, since they allow for pre-tax contributions that mirror 401(k) contributions lost under limitation rules. A deferral plan is the bonus that keeps on giving year-round as it allows you to reduce your current income tax liability and watch funds grow tax-deferred. In addition, your employer can make matching contributions to cover those not allowed under a 401(k) plan, making the deferral plan a genuine incentive for longevity within a company.

Senior Executives Dissatisfied Following Recession

BlueSteps Survey finds 70% of Senior Executives Reporting Staff Cuts and 41% Indicating Job Dissatisfaction

AESC President Peter Felix responds to a LinkedIn discussion to comment on the question “Can head hunters regain the credibility many suggest they destroyed during the Noughties?”



“I have followed this debate with interest and suspect that it still has a way to run. As they should, everyone has a viewpoint about executive search because it is a professional service that touches so many.

Relocating to another country for career progression can be an excellent addition to your resume/CV, and will likely enhance your future executive job opportunities. However, working internationally not only brings many concerns to those involved (in a 2010 survey of BlueSteps members, relocating family was the number 1 concern), but the prospect of returning home after the assignment has been completed can be even more daunting. Of course for some the worry is having to return home, while for others, a fear of being displaced or becoming less employable in their native country overwhelms.
As globalisation continues to develop and the global economic order shifts, international work experience is becoming increasingly important for senior executives. Many corporations are looking outside of their own failing domestic markets to the booming economies of other regions, and require executive talent that is capable of relating to and understanding these markets. However, finding an executive with a culturally diverse work history is not as simple as having a year or two abroad in the relevant nations. This article will discuss some of the issues at hand, drawing inspiration from over 40 responses to a discussion of this topic within the AESC/BlueSteps LinkedIn group and the recent 51st AESC Annual Conference in New York.

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