Back to Latest Posts

Conducting Your Own Job Search

I was reading the September, 2017 HR Magazine (a SHRM publication) while waiting for a colleague to join me at a breakfast meeting.  There was a small article in the HR News section on parents of employees who want to be involved in their adult children’s jobs. 

Wow – who knew!

My three adult children (34, 32 and 29) would likely have me killed if I showed up to discuss a performance discussion they were having with their manager.  They would file a restraining order against me if I became involved with a salary increase discussion. 

But it is executives as well.

Later that same day, I received an e-mail from a ‘virtual’ assistant hired by an executive who wants to make a transition to a new role.  The assistant wanted to assure I had this executive’s resume and asked that I direct questions to her.  Being wildly curious, I read the cover e-mail.  The executive was targeting a CEO or President role at a small to medium company where he could make an impact. 

My clients all seem to want similar characteristics in the people they hire.  One of those characteristics is someone who is not afraid to do tactical work if needed (NOT all the time, but they need to be able to lead strategically and work tactically at times).  Right or wrong, I made the correlation that a person who can’t e-mail me about their own career goals (to be a President of a small to medium company) might not be a cultural fit for any roles we are filling. 

At least once per week.

We receive multiple e-mails every day from executives who want to make a move.  We also receive calls about how to get a resume to us OR how to set up a time to talk.  At least once per week, that e-mail or call comes from the spouse of the candidate.  My response – have the candidate contact me directly unless the spouse is wanting to talk about his/her career. 

My simple message – a career decision is a personal one.  At all levels, we hire the person based on how they conduct themselves, not on how someone working on their behalf conducts themselves.  The first impression these e-mails or calls make is the wrong one. 

You never get a second chance to make a first impression.