Tag: CEO Jobs
Landing your first, or second or third CEO role can be accelerated through understanding how to best market yourself in a way that most fluidly communicates your value points as well as gaining clarity on what the market best responds to. Here are a few quick tips to help you in your next executive transition:
Approximately 60 percent of executives I speak with will share with me in our initial conversation that they have always been recruited for positions – and that for the first time in a very long time, they are faced with finding their next opportunity themselves. They may have some contacts and even a few recruiters they keep in touch with (read more about working with executive recruiters here). But their resume has not been updated in over a decade, they don’t do much with LinkedIn, and they are aware the job search landscape has changed … but don’t feel prepared for the trip. They generally think the right next move is to “update their resume and see what is out there…”
If that sounds like you, the tips below will help bring clarity regarding the correct steps to take to move forward confidently. It is a positive place to be, filled with opportunity since you come with no preconceived notions of the job search!
Equally important to note is you want to start your executive transition the right way. The reason why is because the wrong resume, the wrong approach, the wrong job search techniques and the wrong expectations can sap your energy and leave you feeling frustrated in a matter of weeks or months.
Here are some key tips to prevent that from happening to you:
DETERMINE YOUR FOCUS OF DIRECTION
First, you have to plan. A few things you will want to know are:
- What key skills do you want to use?
- What size company do you want to be with?
- What titles would you find enticing?
- Do you have a location preference?
- What industry would you like to be in?
- What are your driving motivators? (The things you have to have no matter what. This could be an industry change, a compensation range, a location or other.)
- What is your time frame and sense of urgency?
- How is the industry you are interested in doing economically? It is growing or stable? Is it in decline? Ideally, you want to fish where the fish are biting so bear that in mind if your industry is lagging … you may want to look for industries that are connected or on the periphery that present more opportunities. You can find several executive resume samples that show a crystal clear focus here.
BUILD YOUR EXECUTIVE RESUME
Now that you have defined the points important to you, you can (and must) build your resume TO them. That means beginning at the end and working backward. Your CXO resume is a marketing document, not a historical career narrative. A very valuable exercise is to explore online jobs to gauge what you are drawn to. Once you have found two or three, you can look for running themes in keywords and phrases. You want to use these as the basis for designing your executive resume. This is where a top executive resume writer can really pay off. It can be difficult to write about yourself in the light you truly should in order to accurately and crisply convey your value proposition and professional polish. Many executives feel as if they are bragging. When writing your resume, you can quell this feeling by simply focusing on your metric-driven accomplishments. The facts, as they say, speak for themselves. Always start your bullets with those facts. In other words, the result comes first, then you tell how you accomplished the result. More on the power of the C-level resume here.
EXECUTIVE JOB SEARCH STRATEGIES
Finally, you need to use the right job search techniques. Searching at the SVP or CXO level is tricky. The rulebook is completely different. You can’t exactly pass your resume around and ask your buddies if they know of any key executive roles (and to call you if they run across one). I mean, you can – but this strategy is counter to you as a leader. Leaders take charge. They maintain more control than this. Fortunately, there are many job search strategies that work flawlessly and are in alignment with leaders and executives. They involve helping others make good decisions for you by giving them the right information. The mediums can be both passive and active as there is a time and place for both strategies and they usually include a combination of executive recruiters, private equity firms, executive networking, LinkedIn and going direct (the hidden job market). I break these strategies down for you in this article. I even developed several easy and results-producing online courses on C-level job search strategies here.
This is a foolproof systematic approach used by top executives across the globe. I hope this empowers you with knowledge that you do not have to give up being the leader you are to facilitate your job transition. In fact, having control of your transition can instead mean that you get to cherry-pick your next ideal role and command premier compensation for it!
At the CEO level, your career transition landscape has a unique terrain: there are fewer C-level positions, they come up less often and each has its specific requirements. As a smart CEO, you will first plan your upcoming transition by defining and writing down your wants, needs, career goals and driving motivators. You will want to layer in some due diligence respective to the short and long term economic growth and stability of the industries you have in your sights. The reason this due diligence is so critical is because today’s leadership resume must be written to what you wish to do moving forward vs. a chronological list of what you have done.
Demonstrating you can communicate your focus, your purpose and your value inspires confidence and will attract the positions you wish to explore.
Once you have a plan in place, this is the bull’s eye that you can now create and design your CEO resume for. A primary complaint from C-level executives, and one of the major issues with C-level executive resumes, is that they contain too much information. You may find that you have done and achieved so much in your career, you can’t find the objectivity needed to understand what to leave in and what to leave out of your executive leadership resume.
As a CEO, you need to communicate certain things in your resume that demonstrate your value in a C-level role to potential companies. In addition, you may be interviewed by a board of directors, and often in these cases, they like to see an executive biography in addition to your resume.
Hiring a professional resume writer to help craft a CEO resume can not only serve as a huge weight off of your shoulders, but bring you a substantial ROI in many ways, including:
- Helping to present yourself in a highly professional polished manner.
- Helping to showcase the metrics of your accomplishments.
- Helping to communicate the value that you bring to the table.
All of these benefits can and do have a positive effect on your interviews and offers. Regardless of who writes your CEO resume, there are two critical factors you must not miss.
The first is to write to the positions you are focusing on. You can start this process by finding 2 or 3 representative positions and then literally highlighting the keywords and phrases in those positions that match you. From this you will be able to see running themes and gain clarity on your own personal branding (what you are attracted to) as well as understanding what keywords and phrases to layer in.
The second is to be sure you are speaking to the needs of the companies with whom you have defined represent ideal positions for you. At the CEO resume level, it is a mistake to use an old resume or a 6-page resume which may contain task-oriented details from past positions you held 15 or 20 years ago. At this point in your career everything needs to be recalibrated. Older positions may be placed in a “Past Career Highlights” section and given a brief nod with perhaps one notable accomplishment listed. For more recent positions, again, be sure to omit any task-driven details and concentrate on leadership skills. You may wish to emphasize leadership skills such as your visionary ability, how you empower organizational change, drive profitability through developing and initiating business goals, provide overall corporate direction, and inspire core teams across various divisions and reinforce corporate branding.
If you find yourself unsure of what accomplishments of yours to highlight, simply refer back to the ideal career positions you unearthed. Whatever they are asking for, those are the skills you match and reflect back to them using quantifiable accomplishments wherever and whenever you can.
If these basics are not reflected in your CEO resume, it could cost you a job interview or offer. You don’t have to list your entire detailed career history in your leadership resume. Simply present a polished document that shows what kind of a CEO you could be to their company.
Hot Jobs For 2009
Predictions on new job trends for 2009 inspired by President-elect Barack Obama’s economic initiatives:
Initiative: Construction of roads, bridges, transit and rural broadband
1. Construction managers
2. Project managers
3. Civil engineers
4. Computer-aided drafting specialists
5. Telecommunications engineers
Initiative: Greater oversight of financial markets
1. Compliance accountants
2. Internal auditors
3. Tax accountants
4. Government regulators
Initiative: Energy independence
1. Electrical engineers
2. Mechanical engineers
3. Power grid managers
4. Biofuels chemists
5. Sales and marketing
Initiative: Healthcare modernization
2. Information technology specialists
3. Bioinformatics specialists
4. Information security specialists
5. Software developers
Initiative: Volunteerism and community involvement
1. Social workers
Recruiters Confidence Improves
Source: ExecuNet Recruiter Confidence Index
Confidence in the Executive Employment Market — Next Six Months
The outlook for the top of the employment market in 2009 is beginning to show signs of improvement. ExecuNet’s Recruiter Confidence Index (RCI), which hit an all-time low in November, climbed higher in December, as executive search firms begin to eye the second quarter of 2009 with more optimism about assignment levels.
“While the uptick in confidence indicates that more executive recruiters are expecting an increase in assignment growth, the RCI remains below healthy levels,” says Mark Anderson, president of ExecuNet. “Looking ahead to 2009, the search industry is cautiously optimistic that executive level job growth will begin to rebound in the second half of the year. In the meantime, recruiters continue to report pockets of job growth in the Healthcare, Environmental, and Energy industries.”
Growing Metropolitan Areas
According to Economy.com, metropolitan areas showing job growth include: Boulder, Colo.; Lafayette and Louisiana, La.; Bethesda, Md.; Jacksonville, N.C.; Binghamton, N.Y.; Oklahoma City; Okla.; State College, Pa.; and Brownsville, El Paso, Laredo, McAllen, and San Antonio, Texas.
CEOs of Smaller Companies Resist Downsizing
A survey of small firms by the Entrex Private Company Index found that 72 percent of CEOs are bucking the downsizing trend and plan to increase the number of employees they hire this year.
“Even better, respondents indicated they would maintain the current number of full-time employees — meaning zero CEOs suggest plans to decrease employment size in 2009,” the study found.