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Executive Job Search/Career Transition

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. 

As you embark on your executive job search, you will quickly realize the digital age has vastly altered the way in which a successful job search at the executive level is conducted. With the introduction of social media and what appears to be the ease of applying through the vast selection of job boards, you will need to execute a savvy job search to identify and ultimately land the right-fit role.

In 2017, it seems like everything is being measured and quantified. Over time, this trend has spread to people-centric industries like executive search. Like it or not, the use of personality assessments – and other pre-employment testing – is alive and well as companies are hiring employees from the entry level to the executive level. I’m often asked by clients and candidates alike, “what role should personality testing play in the hiring process?” My response usually begins with the words “be careful…”

As an executive are you looking for a great way to differentiate yourself and make a personal connection with your choice employer(s)? Short videos can help executives deliver a quick and compelling message while translating your brand more effectively than the traditional cover letter. job search video

The search for c-level jobs. A topic very close to everyone’s heart, right? I happened to do some research on this topic recently, and also spoke to quite a few people. Based on candid inputs from respondents, and my own groundwork, here are a few pointers.

As an executive, retained recruiter, I commonly get calls and LinkedIn messages from people on the job market asking if I have a job for which they could be considered. For the few I’m able to give time to speak with, I ask “What do you want to do next?” and “What industry sector and function is the best fit for you?” The responses are often purposefully vague in an effort to keep options open. Since candidates don’t know what I am working on, they understandably do not want to be eliminated unknowingly. Without a clear target neither of us will hit the bullseye. Keeping your options open can mean no options at all.

I hear it all the time. “Nobody is calling me for interviews because of my age”.

Ageism is alive and kicking at all hiring levels, even at the senior-executive level. Many senior executives go from feeling that they’ve finally reached the pinnacle of achievement and experience in their career to seemingly overnight being concerned about being “too old”.  In fact, senior executives are often caught in the worst Catch-22 of all: their calm maturity, experience, and 360-degree view of operations gained through decades of overcoming business challenges are precisely where their unique value resides.

No one will pat you on the back tomorrow and say, “Good job all these years as our Technology Manager—we’re rewarding you with a promotion to chief executive officer (CEO) of the company!” Most likely, they wouldn’t even offer you the role of chief technology officer.

Why is that?

For at least one, very important reason: You haven’t proven you’re capable of—and ready for—that level of responsibility.

This is not to say that you haven’t put in a lot of time and effort to make your technology-focused function perform effectively and efficiently or that you haven’t paid attention to its importance in supporting corporate objectives.

When it comes to managing your executive career, leaving things to the last minute doesn’t often lead to success. The same can be said for your executive job search. Before starting your search, it’s essential to do adequate preparation. This preparation time will allow you to decide exactly what you’re looking for in your next role and get the resources and materials ready to communicate this effectively to an executive search consultant or hiring manager.
 

BlueSteps recently hosted an #ExecCareer Chat on the topic of executive executive job search strategy, featuring Lindsay Bray Landsberg, Boyden Global Executive Search, Rainer Morita, BlueSteps Executive Career Services, and Kimberly Sernel, BlueSteps Executive Career Services.

Some of the questions asked included: