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.
BlueSteps is an exclusive service of the Association of Executive Search and Leadership Consultants, the voice of excellence for executive search and leadership consultants worldwide. Confidentiality is a cornerstone of AESC's mission, and only AESC member firms and consultants have access to BlueSteps members resume info. Click here to learn more about the additional benefits of becoming a BlueSteps member.
Not all job search methods are equally productive, especially at the executive level. Spend most of your job search time growing your network rather than searching job boards. Activities that increase your chances of referrals and connecting with the right executive search consultants will make you the most visible for executive jobs. Many executive positions are not even posted on job boards as they’re confidential or employers are simply weary of wading through a flood of resumes.
Says a candidate to the search consultant: “So, how do you like my CV?” The search consultant replies: “Well, I’m actually impressed. I have never seen a CV on a yellow sticky note before.”
While I personally have never actually received a curriculum vitae on a yellow sticky note, I have had many memorable instances regarding content included on CVs and the fact that some CVs caused me to endure endless time searching for content that was well hidden or not included at all. Composing a CV seems to be as subjective as selecting a personal clothing style, but there are some corporate guidelines you should consider. You might even find out that you have spent too much time on your CV in the past, but did not include the crucial facts.
The videophone. The bar code. The computer mouse. The digital audio player. The personal digital assistant. Each was innovative. Each was ahead of its time. Each solved a problem that nobody had. So, if nobody could or even wanted to use those inventions, were they really innovative?
“Ageism”, being an “ism”, means that it is a matter of subjective thought. The implication: Ageism is a matter of perception, which as an employee or job candidate, you have some level of control. Historically, those most concerned were largely those in their 50s. Now we have the millennials; who are known to place quality of life ahead of work achievement. Ageism is now a metaphor, which is multi-dimensional and evolving. With better healthcare, many in their 50s are performing at the same level as those in the past did when they were in their 40s. While ageism is known to affect organizational hiring practices, you as an employee or job candidate have more control as to how you’re perceived now than ever before.
If interviewing skills were offered as a course in college, it would likely not be a 100 level course or even one listed as a lecture series. One person could not stand up before a few dozen (or hundred) students and pontificate as to how one should go about interviewing; or even watch videos of previous interviews that have either won the job or gotten a harsh decline. No, interviewing skills are active and require an equally lively—even proactive—approach.
You’ve got the degrees, the highly sought-after skills, the years of leadership experience, and the impressive job titles to boot. You are armed with incredible success stories to delight and impress interviewers, but so far, your resume hasn’t garnered enough interest for you to be able to tell them in person.
If you’re beginning to wonder why your phone isn’t ringing, maybe it’s time to ask yourself if that resume of yours is effectively marketing you for the role you are seeking.
Sending that first message to someone is a critical part of the job seeking process. The subject line needs to give the reader an interest in learning more and a desire to read the message. Candidates should consider: What is their mission? What is the most efficient way to achieve that mission? For many years, executives have tried to create the perfect formula for a message subject line, but there is no single solution. Three things to consider in creating an effective e-mail subject line are: creativity, relevance, and enticement.