Industry Associations Energize Your Job Search

Engaging with Industry AssociationsSenior leaders frequently cite their engagement with industry associations as an essential component of their career management. At its essence, active involvement in industry associations makes you more valuable internally and more marketable externally.

Engagement at a paramount level, such as serving on the board of directors or on an executive committee of an industry association, means collaborating with corporate leaders of an entire sector and contributing to decision making that could shape the future of the industry. This broad exposure and experience presents individuals with opportunities far greater than any single company.

In my latest article for Forbes—”How Engaging with an Industry Association Can Energize Your Job Search”—I examine the short and long-term takeaways gained through industry association engagement, including:

  • Comprehensive perspective of an industry and the competitive landscape
  • Insight into best practices and knowledge sharing
  • New challenges
  • Fresh thinking and innovative ideas
  • Talent identification
  • New business deals and partnerships
  • Professional network growth
  • Leadership skill development

The key to return on investment with an association is getting involved and engaging with other members. The dividends don’t appear overnight, and trust needs to be established, but in the long term, engagement with the association can have an outstanding impact on your career. You’ll gain invaluable experience seeing your peers in action, contributing on a broader scale and having the opportunity to listen, observe and learn from industry leaders.

Read more about how to maximize your relationship with an industry association by visiting Forbes, or contact me to discuss your executive job search strategy.

Leader to Senior Leader: Making the Jump

Leader to Senior Leader: Making the Jump

Advancing from leader to senior leader can be frustratingly elusive. Many people reach a point in their careers where they see others seamlessly making the jump to top functional roles and wonder what they are doing wrong. While a certain level of self-analysis is beneficial, its escalation to self-doubt is counterproductive.

Sometimes, career advancement is a matter of gaining the right experience and knowledge and, other times, it’s a matter of building skills that can be difficult to define and harder yet to develop, such as executive presence, strategic agility and influencing decisions outside your sphere of authority.

Regardless of the precise formula, the road to senior leadership begins with taking ownership of your own development and engaging in high-value development activities that will put you on the right path.

In my latest article for Forbes—”Leader to Senior Leader: Making the Jump”—I provide a roadmap for achieving senior leadership at your current job through such activities as:

  • Asking for feedback
  • Stepping beyond your role
  • Focusing on the right things
  • Actively observing
  • Communicating your ambitions

If you’re at a point in your career where more senior opportunities are limited internally, and upward mobility is not in your foreseeable future, it may be time to explore your options externally.

How you position yourself for a step up from leader to senior leader is crucial to your job search success. Since your resume serves as a prospective employer’s first impression of you and reveals you how view your career, you want to be sure that it effectively transmits your fit for a more senior assignment. Simply put, your resume’s content should reflect the job you want, not the job you have.

Read more about making the jump from leader to senior leader at Forbes, or contact me to discuss your executive job search.

Company Loyalty: Does It Carry Weight in the Job Search?

Company Loyalty: Does It Carry Weight in the Job Search?

It used to be that company loyalty was a valued attribute and considered a major asset. It implied commitment. Ten years with a company? Great. Twenty years? Even better. Today the tables have turned — now a diversity of experience trumps longevity.

Recruiters and hiring managers like to see that candidates, especially executives, have operated and flourished in a variety of environments, alongside different colleagues, leaders and circumstances.

Whether people leave for a bump in pay, career advancement, or a new experience, a one- or two-year stint at a company is no longer considered a blemish on a resume. Rather, it’s increasingly becoming the norm — even valued.

In my latest article for Forbes—”Company Loyalty: Does It Carry Weight In The Job Search?“— I lay out the implications of a long stint at a company on your career and I recommend what you should focus on when seeking a new job after a long term at your current job, including:

Highlight Diversity of Experience and Impact

Provide a career snapshot that illustrates how you progressed, remained engaged, were challenged by new leadership experiences, solved problems and — crucially — made an impact.

Demonstrate Ability to Lead Change

Focus on the aspects of the job that demonstrate a direct influence on driving change, since it is a highly coveted and transferable skill set. That can mean how you:

  • Led your team and organization through significant periods of growth, ownership changes, corporate restructuring  and strategic business shifts
  • Reinvented the business as a response to changing market conditions, consumer demands or the competitive landscape
  • Shepherded a new business start-up or turnaround

Avoid Company-Specific Language

The acronyms, phrases, and overall jargon some have been using for decades are not always transferable to other companies and may imply that one is too steeped in another corporate culture to succeed elsewhere.

To read more about the effect of company loyalty on your job search, visit Forbes.

If you are looking for a partner to help you prepare for your executive job search, contact me to learn more about how we can work together.

Candidate Relationship Management: Is Neglect The New Normal?

Candidate Relationship Management: Is Neglect The New Normal?

A brand president shared a story with me about his recent interviewing experience. After receiving an interview confirmation with the CEO of a multibillion-dollar global apparel company, he arrived at the corporate headquarters only to be informed that there had been a mix-up: The CEO was traveling for business on the West Coast and would not be available. The SVP of HR met with him instead and—for the next 60 minutes—proceeded to bash the company’s internal communication practices. There was no follow-up from anyone at the company, including the CEO.

This anecdote—about poor candidate relationship management—inspired my latest article for Forbes, “Candidate Relationship Management: Is Neglect The New Normal?”

A simple Google search for “bad job interviews” returns more than 15 million results. Whether it is being stood up, being treated rudely, or receiving no feedback, poor candidate relationship management is on the rise.

Most of us—regardless of our age—can still vividly recall our worst experiences as a candidate. Prior to social media, we may have shared our experiences with a few friends and family members and then dropped it. But today? Remember that old adage “bad news travels fast?” Well, “fast” has been replaced by “warp speed,” as social media has enabled anything to become viral and remain a few clicks away for eternity.

Why does this happen? The Talent Board, specializing in candidate experience research, identifies many factors that can derail candidate relationship management. The following three rise to the surface:

  1. Communication.Whether internal (human resources and department hiring manager) or external (recruitment firm), information is not being shared consistently and who owns what part of the process is unclear.
  2. Training. Oftentimes individuals have not been trained in how to conduct an interview.
  3. Culture. A workplace may be understaffed and the time needed for an employee’s own work will supersede his or her ability to participate constructively in the candidate recruitment process.

To read more about how you can improve candidate relationship management, visit Forbes.

If you are looking for a partner to help you prepare for your executive job search, contact me to learn more about how we can work together.