Over the years it has become very clear to me that there is a difference between the Executive job search and the regular job search. Most of us hunt for a job by hitting the job boards and shaking our network trees to see what falls out. However, Executives do things a little different and they are very successful at finding new jobs really quickly. So what does the Executive job search look like? Here’s some insight.
1. Executives know exactly what they want to do for a living. Some are passionate while others aren’t but they all know what they bring to the table. They are focused on what they have experience doing and their value. They aren’t trying to be a jack of all trades. They don’t try to be generalists. They are specialists in their industry. That’s very important because if you do not know what you want to do, what you are good at, or why someone should pay you a salary to do a specific thing, then your job search is going to be difficult. So the lesson here, figure out the thing that you do best.
2. Executives network to get work. We have all heard it before, “Network to get work” however Executives actually put their network to work for them. When Executives are laid off, fired or decide to leave a company, they put the word out to their network first. They have “buddies” who they contact and inform about the situation, often times before they tell their own spouses. Some of us are afraid to tell people we are looking for a job out of fear of judgement or because our network has dried out. The moral here is to keep your network fresh with new connections and develop a list of trusted associates that you can email if need be.
3. Executives invest in their career search. Yes of course I was going to talk about the monetary investment. Executives hire career coaches, executive search firms and headhunters to help them get jobs. Oh yeah, and they hire resume writers too. True story, many of my Executive clients did not need convincing at all, nor did they haggle over the price. It’s my experience that Executives understand the importance of having a great resume, cover letter and LinkedIn profile along with a search strategy in order to beat the competition. I have worked with Executives who constantly hire resume writers each time they are in the job market, because they know that a professionally crafted resume shows a potential employer that you take your credentials seriously!
Now you may be thinking, “If your network is good then you don’t need a resume.” and that is true, however that’s putting all your eggs in one basket and although it could work, it also might not, whereas those who have all four phases covered (resume, cover letter, LinkedIn and network connections) tend to find jobs right away.
Maybe you’re not an Executive yet, well here are somethings you can do right now. First, build your network. Make time to forge new connections, reach out to olds ones and update your online information. Get active in your community and/or professional development association because you never know who may be in a position to hire or refer you. If you hate your current job, still be a nice person – being mean, difficult, hateful or crabby only hurts you in the long run. Remember don’t burn a bridge, you never know who could be in a position to hire you in the future. Finally, there is a ton of DIY resume tips on the internet – get busy.
So if you really want to advance your current, search like an Executive.
Need help? Join the Resume Crusade, contact me ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’