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A recent survey of executives about traits needed to succeed as an executive highlighted leadership skills as the most commonly cited one. While there are several definitions of leadership skills (pray, who doesn’t have a say on his or her own interpretation of leadership) with encompassing factors such as communication, motivation and strategic orientation, a pragmatic denotation which I picked up from a mentor is the impact you have on the people around you.

Not having a job search plan is like trying to reach the North Pole without a compass. You’re likely to wander aimlessly, unable to see your goal and not even sure you’re heading in the right direction. That’s probably a less extreme disaster-in-the-making than exploring the frozen north without a compass, but it’s not a course you want to take if you hope to have a successful job search.

 

Is a Five-Year Job Search Plan Essential?

The retained executive recruiter is like a casting director for the client. The recruiter wants to know: “Can I see putting the candidate on stage with the client?” Recruiters will have a handle on the organization’s leadership priorities and sensibilities but will be less able to speak about all the details of a job or organization—which you can learn from the hiring manager (if you make it onto that stage!). There is an aspect of long-term value to discussing a new position with a recruiter.

Is your resume not achieving you the results you want in the executive job market? If you’re not getting traction from executive recruiters, you could be succumbing to one of these 20 common executive resume pitfalls. Take a fresh look at your resume and see if you can spot any of these recruiter faux-pas.

 

1. Offering Up Personal Details

If you’re an executive who has conducted a job search, you know the key to success is to get noticed. Be a “mover” and a “shaker” in your industry or profession. Executive search consultants are seeking thought leaders and top professionals within their industry. To be recognized as such, you must be continuously networking, evolving your knowledge, and staying abreast of industry trends. There are numerous tactics you can incorporate to improve your visibility and increase your professional network.

Interviews…interesting topic, isn’t it? I get asked very often….how to crack an interview! For starters, an interview is a view of each other (the company & the candidate getting to know each other)…it is NOT a one-sided conversation…often, one sees very senior folks sitting in interviews like timid rabbits waiting for permission to eat cabbage rather than playing offense!

As a leadership development coach and Executive Director of BlueSteps Executive Career Services, I constantly work with professionals who are seeking coveted positions in the C-suite for the first time. They often have had highly successful careers as Directors and Vice Presidents, but for whatever reason, struggle to attain their next career milestone as a C-level executive. This can be of course frustrating, especially for productive, accomplished individuals, most of whom have been working toward a top leadership position for their entire careers.

If you’re an executive who has conducted a job search, you know the key to success is to get noticed. Be a “mover” and a “shaker” in your industry or profession. Executive search consultants are seeking thought leaders and top professionals within their industry. To be recognized as such, you must be continuously networking, evolving your knowledge, and staying abreast of industry trends. There are numerous tactics you can incorporate to improve your visibility and increase your professional network.

If the time has come to accelerate your career and you are ready for a change, chances are you’ve considered reaching out to executive search firms.

Partnering with executive search firms can be an excellent way to expedite your search and begin exploring opportunities, but it’s best to carefully plan your approach. Read on to discover some top tips to consider when reaching out to executive search firms.

Executive Search Firms

1. Make sure your resume reflects your fitness for precise future opportunities.

Executive interview success doesn’t happen by chance. It requires careful research, strategic planning and a plethora of preparation. There are proactive steps that candidates can take at every step of the process to increase their chances of success: from pre-interview research and perfecting their first impressions to learning how to expertly navigate challenging questions and knowing how to conduct post-interview follow-up.

There are many interview pitfalls that executive candidates can succumb to, so for those with interviews on the horizon, BlueSteps presents this checklist of do’s and don’ts for prospective executive interview candidates:

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