Landing a great new executive level job is not a matter of luck. Executives must use the most effective job search strategies. This starts with the premise that being a passive versus an active candidate is not a good choice for success in today’s executive job market. Social media, most especially social networking, has lifted the veil that historically shielded individuals from public view unless they wanted exposure. In the past, an individual could effectively remove themselves from the public eye through electing not to participate in activities that would give strangers access to their information. This enabled executives to remove themselves from the recruiting world’s periscope by acts of omission like abstaining from sharing their printed resume, refusing to file applications, shunning public appearances and consciously guarding their personal contact information.
Of course, no one actually lived in a glass tower. However, the concept of restricted or privileged access conferred an allusion of exclusivity and cast an allure that had the desirable effect of inflating interest about an individual and increasing their market value. Today, that tactic of withholding information and avoiding public scrutiny is viewed with suspicion and is likely to attach negative labels to an individual whether deserved or not. Others who don’t actually know that private person are likely to suspect they have something to hide, are naïve about expectations of transparency or are just plain snooty.
One thing that has not changed is that having the right connections promotes career success and that not having the right contacts makes it a lot harder to achieve career goals. One of the major differences between then and now is the type of contacts needed to open doors and generate career building opportunities. When upward career mobility was likely to result from internal promotions, up the corporate ladder, it was okay to focus on getting the support of co-workers, especially managers in whose footsteps it was possible to follow to the top position. Transitions these days are more likely to be between employers. It is still true that what you know is not as important as who. But, the difference is that it is not just about who you know but equally about who knows, remembers and likes you who has hiring decision authority. That once was your boss but now it is more likely to be a contact like a previous colleague, one of your business partners, a fellow alumni and others in your network, not necessarily someone you currently work with every day.
Welcome to the world of job search for executives 2017!
- Patience does not guarantee promotions.
- No job is permanent.
- There is no such thing as job security.
- Lack of an online footprint can be a career killer.
The job search game was revolutionized by the internet and transformed by electronic communications. Moreover, internal recruiters and outside talent management firms have been eliminated from the recruiting process and are not routinely involved in critical executive recruiting decisions.
Connections have always influenced how the most coveted senior level positions were filled. The proliferation of social networking, online dissemination of personal information and increased workforce mobility have raised the value of connections to a new higher level.
Success almost always requires moving between companies.
To be a player in a dynamic executive job market means being visible (to be identified) and accessible (to be approached.)
Here’s what it takes to be a top player who repeatedly runs successful executive job search campaigns to advance their career with details to follow in a future article.
- Take control over your public reputation by publishing information about yourself that you want others to know.
- Build your online presence crafting the image you want others to have of you as an expert in your field and a friendly, likeable person whom they can trust.
- Purposefully manage your in real life connections. Most importantly, reach beyond the people you interact with on a regular basis to stay in touch with those who you don’t normally cross paths with on a routine basis. This means that once you have a close contact and make sure you don’t lose touch.
- Don’t limit your network to people to the “low hanging fruit.” You must Network Purposefully™. Be proactive. Identify whom you need to meet (prospective hiring decision makers and people who can recommend you to these individuals) and who can appreciate your potential ( eg., future employer managers, owners, investors, board members, industry leaders, etc.) and needs to know, like and trust you.
With executives changing jobs about every three years, there is no time to waste actively pursuing new targeted contacts, e.g.,those who can provide new job leads, introduce you to the right contacts or recommend you for the type of role you want next. It is also necessary to continually maintain connections and seek out more contacts from the first day to the last of every employment engagement since you cannot predict if you may need to or will want to make a change at any time. Get in touch with JobWhiz to expedite your next career move into a role you really want.
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