BlueSteps Career Management and Executive Search Blog
The BlueSteps Career Management Blog is written with a C-level audience in mind on career management topics ranging from executive compensation, executive resumes, and interview tips to networking, executive job search, and gaining visibility as a professional in one’s industry.
The BlueSteps Executive Search Blog links senior executive candidates to actual retained search recruitment insights from AESC member executive recruiters, BlueSteps career advisors and other guest writers.
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There’s nothing that will derail an otherwise stellar career trajectory than a new job that isn’t the right fit. Suddenly, the choice becomes whether to accept unhappiness and continue down what you know is a dead-end road, or deal with having a short stint to explain to your network, on your resume, and during interviews.
One way to avoid accepting a wrong-fit opportunity is to avoid being offered one to begin with.
It may sound great to have a slew of job offers to turn down, but this amounts to, at best, a waste of time (both yours and the prospective employers) and at worst, extreme temptation to make the wrong move.
Pray, who doesn’t want to be a board director? Images that come to mind include being in the driving seat, excitement at the opportunity to steer direction of the company etc. I did some research on the topic recently and below is a compendium of my findings and thoughts.
The boardroom is one of the places where character and experience reign supreme. Landing a role as a board member can be a prestigious and lucrative venture but board opportunities are rare.
Consider this, there are fewer than 4,000 U.S. companies listed by Nasdaq. According to CFO.com, each of those companies has an average of 9.2 board members with 1.5 of those being inside directors. Therefore, the total number of seats available for outside directors is approximately 30,800.
What is the most difficult question during the interview process? It’s not “Why are you the best candidate for the job?” “Tell me about yourself,” or even “What is your greatest weakness?” The hardest question during the interview process is “What is Your Salary History?” The question is challenging because it can have a major impact on your earnings and, sometimes, even the likelihood of being hired. If your current salary is lower than what the standard salary for the role is or what you are truly worth, you may end up getting an offer than is lower than you deserve.
Within every industry, there is a select group of executives who always seem to be in the spotlight. These leaders regularly speak at industry events and are consistently interviewed in well-known industry publications. You may even be envious of their spotlight—but it’s not the spotlight they’re after, it’s the branding.
While these leaders, some may even call them thought leaders, possess a wide variety of characteristics that make them likeable and successful, they share one, significant strength: the ability to brand themselves.
As an executive career consultant of 25 years, I am often asked: “Is this a good resume?” However, it is impossible to answer this frequently asked question without understanding the individual’s career context. An executive resume can be considered “good” for a variety of reasons. What really matters is if it is an effective resume, which is much harder to achieve.
Whenever I do a resume consultation, I always start by asking, “What is your goal?” The answer to that question is what guides how the resume is written. Your resume needs to be aspirational as much as it is historical to achieve its purpose.
Executive compensation negotiation is often seen as a necessary evil for candidates navigating the interview process. With so many pitfalls, and high stakes with lasting repercussions, it can make candidates of all levels feel somewhat worried and uncomfortable. However, there are several steps that candidates can take to better prepare and alleviate some of the stress.
It’s no wonder, really. You thoroughly researched the company, its challenges, and its competitors. You anticipated interview questions and tackled them with ease. You knew the core message you wanted to convey and you did so— effectively. You researched your interviewers carefully and were armed with excellent questions to ask. And, let’s be honest, you couldn’t possibly have looked sharper than in that dapper new suit.
Like most of our leading companies, universities and research organisations are homogeneous at the leadership level. There are some great initiatives in Australian higher education and elsewhere to help promote equity and diversity in important target areas like science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM), for example the Athena Swan Charter in the UK and Australia’s SAGE pilot. There are still things you can do to increase the chances of success in developing your own career, and to help others.