You’d think that once you earn an executive position, you have mastered every aspect of your career. After all, you have enough education and experience – not to mention the right connections – to secure yourself one of the highest positions in business. However, just because you excel at making decisions and leading your business doesn’t mean you are an expert at everything. In fact, many executives utterly fail at perhaps the most fundamental element of the business career: getting a job.
The job hunt is never easy, even for executives. Here are a few biggest mistakes might make when looking for your next executive position.
Expecting a Short Job Search
You might be a high-powered executive, but you aren’t the only one. In fact, most executives obtained their current positions by continually looking out for the latest and better openings so that you will have plenty of competition for the best jobs. Likely, your job search will take several months, if not more than a year. As long as you remain focused and determined, you should find (and get) the job you want.
Failing to Establish Career Goals
For much of your career, your goals were probably akin to “reach the executive level.” Now that you’ve done that, you need to establish new goals that drive your job search. Your goals should explain what kind of work you want to do, what industry you intend to enter and what organisations interest you. You might also consider drafting daily goals that help advance your job search slowly but certainly.
Forgetting Your Brand
In business, the brand is everything – even when it comes to the hiring process. Applicants with personal brands that effectively match the company brand are more likely to receive offers. Therefore, it is imperative that you tailor your branding materials – your social media accounts, your application materials, etc. – to the general style of your prospective employers’.
Ignoring Your Potential Employers
Well before the interview stage, you need to know all there is to know about the organisations. That means understanding their brand, knowing their products, and even digging up market research to grasp their recent performance. Not only will this help you determine whether you do want to work for them, but your familiarity will shine through in your application materials and interviews.
Recycling Old Resumes
You might not have applied for a job since 2012, but that doesn’t mean you can add a few new lines to your old resume and call it good. Because executives boast entirely different responsibilities and skill sets than lower-level employees, executive resumes are altogether different from lower-level resumes. It is safest to hire an executive resume writer to do this work because they know the nuances of high-level application documents.
When you are considering a business decision, you want quantifiable proof that your choice is advantageous. Hiring managers are the same; they want to see numbers attached to applicants, so they can verify their benefits and compare them to others’. You should already have a cache of notable achievements you can use to add this data to your resume, and your resume writer can help you maximise its impact.
Drowning in Data
There is such a thing as offering too much data in your application package. By now, you likely have decades-worth of employment experience that contributes to your success as an executive. However, not all of it is vital information for hiring managers. It’s important to remember that hiring managers are working with dozens of applications in precious little time; though they likely consider executive resumes for longer than the average six seconds, they still aren’t committed to reading several pages of material. At most, your resume should be two full pages, which will require substantial trimming and summarise on your part.
You know that you don’t need to love what you do to be good at it, but a lack of passion – or worse, a notable apathy – is a big red flag for hiring managers. Throughout your application materials and in interviews, you need to ooze passion for the company, the products, and the responsibilities you will take on. The best way to show desire is to offer examples of being passionate about previous jobs.
This article is contributed by Tiffany Rowe, writer of seekvisibility.com.