Searching for a job at the executive level is a VERY different game. During a relatively short interview, executive candidates must prove that they…
• Have the skills to do the job
• Can be trusted to lead seasoned employees
• Will be taken seriously as an outsider
• Will make smart decisions with the company’s money
That’s a lot to accomplish in just a couple hours!
Before they even get that interview, first they have to locate the job. A large number of executive jobs are not advertised.
As an executive, where do you look? How do you get a referral into a company where you have no contacts? How do you keep your image as a highly respected executive, yet at the same time announce to the world that you cannot find a job?
Higher Level = More Pressure!
Yet many executives will still take the exact same path to finding a job as everyone else, probably because they just don’t know a better way.
They post with recruiters, not realizing that recruiters find people for jobs, not jobs for people. A recruiter’s ability to help is based on their current openings. They need to work the recruiters’ connections!
They post their resume in costly job sites targeting “executives” only, which is still the equivalent of posting a resume on a job board; which for an executive will drive your price down.
If you are nodding along with each comment, allow me to show you where and how to start your search with 6 effective strategies.
A Good Start
Where executives do often excel is networking. Rarely do I meet an executive who hasn’t already called AND emailed every key person they know. If you haven’t done that yet, start there.
Potential employers will be more selective about your specific experience, such as the industries you’ve worked in and specific titles. Go to LinkedIn, search for people in your target locations who have your exact title within the industries where you have experience. Open all of their profiles and write down where they worked! This will give you a target list of companies to pursue.
Finding Executive Openings
Do an Indeed.com search for open positions at those companies, ANY open positions, not just executive jobs. You just want the posting not the job. Click on them and if the URL doesn’t include the company name, then you have their ATS domain. This is where they house all of their job descriptions. They may not advertise their executive position, but you can bet there’s a description in their ATS. Those are searchable if you know where to look. For a detailed explanation of how to do this, watch this 5 minute video.
Create Warm Leads
Find the CEO’s of your target companies and start following them online. In today’s market, they are online. Get in their groups and follow them. Like/comment on their posts so your name becomes familiar to them in a positive way. They will then be more likely to take your call.
Use Referral Programs
Search people who work in the department you would be in and give them a chance to benefit from the company’s Employee Referral Program. That takes a couple of carefully crafted emails to accomplish, but it’s easy when you know how. For copies of those emails and how to do it, read my blog post on it. I know a senior executive at a national breakfast restaurant that everyone knows, who landed his job using those exact emails I give in that blog.
As an executive, you must take a different approach if you want more than a C-level job at a fledgling company. Waiting for a Fortune 500 company to come to you could be a long wait, regardless of your qualifications.
Take a strategic approach to your search. Have a plan for every week, and every day. It seems to me that executives, more than any other level, know that you MUST continue to learn if you’re going to be successful. Which leads to the 6th strategy:
I urge you to find a resource to learn the job of getting a job. On my Recommended Books page, I have several very good job search books I recommend, with my reviews, and even with interviews I’ve done with the authors; Martin Yate, Harvey Mackay, Richard Bolles and more.
If those don’t meet your needs, look through www.SpeedUpMyJobSearch.com. I’ve been training senior professionals how to strategically land jobs since 1998. I make my living showing them how to interview better than their competition and placing them into jobs. This site can help you if you sign up.
Regardless of the resource you choose, it’s time to get started. Finding an executive job doesn’t have to feel like you’re searching for a white golf ball in the snow. Tactics make a difference. It’s easier than you think.