Tuesday’s Quote of the Day

Someone is looking
for exactly what you have to offer.”
Unknown author

In today’s consolidating job market where mergers have eliminated hundreds of executive positions, searching for a job requires the determination of a (well prepared) zealot with the patience of Job. It is not easy, nor is it pain free.

Do not be intimidated by the competition. You do not have to be the smartest candidate in the applicant pool or have more experience than your counterpart, but you do have to be better prepared.

Executives who lose their jobs are like everyone else in town — they have friends, a spouse with a support group, kids in schools, and ties to churches and other community institutions. With these important attachments it is hard to pack up and move on, even if it is for a better paying job. For some it is out of the question so they limit their search geographically. Seven to 10 years ago, the chances of an executive finding the same or similar job in the same geographic area were fairly decent. Today, not so much. This market requires flexibility, especially if you do not feel you can relocate.

The vast majority of people in this category find that it takes twice as long to find their next job. The norm for most executives searching nationally is six to nine months, potentially longer if you are working without the support of a transition coach. So when you decide against a relocation, understand there are some hard and potentially costly tradeoffs, a lessor title with lower pay, a shift into a new market segment, or even a different industry.

Here are three tips to consider:

  1. Be realistic with your expectations. You may defy the norms of how long it will take but even then it will take some very hard focused work and more than a little luck.
  2. Be focused with your planning. The competition for each good executive position can be 15 to 20 similarly qualified candidates or more. You need to think deeply about what it will take to be the best in the candidate panel. What will you have to change about your approach with your resume and interviewing skills? Trying to get by with what you have done in this past, is a direct path for disappointment.
  3. Leave your ego at the door. So many exceptionally talented CEOs in the market want to have it their way, they want to make the rules. Ten years ago that was doable but not any more. Learn the new rules. Perform in the recruitment process the way you perform in producing exceptional results running businesses.