One of the most common assumptions in the world of career transitions is that executives, regardless of their competence, know how to look for a job. That is just not true.
Hours, days, weeks and months are routinely lost in job searches because executives engage in a trial and error methodology. While looking for a full-time job is a full-time job that requires discipline and focus, that is where the similarities end.
For executives with no marketing or sales experience the process of a job search is more like running a sales promotion campaign than running a business. In this sales campaign, you have one product that consultant Tom Peters labeled as a “Brand called You” in his August 1997 article in Fast Company magazine.
“It’s time for me — and you — to take a lesson from the big brands, a lesson that’s true for anyone who’s interested in what it takes to stand out and prosper in the new world of work.
“Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You,” Peters wrote.
It is a simple enough concept that baffles many executives. Why?
Most of us were reared by our parents with the admonition against bragging brightly etched into our brains. Show people with your actions, your accomplishments, not your words, was the rationale behind the no-brag rule. In today’s digital world that is like saying do a good job, develop a good resume and prospective employers will sort it out. No worries.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The sidelines are filled with competent executives who are waiting to get back in the game, watching lesser mortals grab the top jobs because they do a better job selling themselves. Oh, they are qualified but their track record may not be as impressive as those of the frustrated executives struggling to find another position.
Some of this talent disparity can be blamed on inexpert recruiters, faulty talent evaluation processes or both, but the most common reason that some executives get hired while more qualified leaders do not is the latter group’s inability to master the new rules of a job search in the digital age.
Career Transition Coaching is an invaluable resource for executives planning to take the next step in their careers, or those who have laid off or terminated. For more information on our plans, including affordable options to our popular programs, contact us, CareerTransitions@JohnGSelf.Com
© 2021 John Gregory Self