To land an executive job, you have to find the job and then get an interview.
THE most effective way to get interviews is to go directly to the person with the power to hire you—and that person is always the hiring manager (this is the person who would be your boss, or your boss’s boss). This person never works in Human Resources, so do not waste one second applying for jobs online.
At a management level, depending on exactly where you are, your hiring manager is going to be someone at the C-Level, or with the title of Director, Vice-President, President, or something similar. It could also be a Board of Directors or an investment group.
The hiring manager is the one who can say “yes, you’re hired.” HR can’t say “yes,” they can only say “no.” All they do is either stop you (which they often do, even if you don’t deserve it) or pass you along to the hiring manager. So, skip them. You don’t need HR to be your gatekeeper. Go directly to the hiring manager. How do you find this person?
Find everyone you need searching Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, Xing, Spoke, Jigsaw, corporate websites, anywhere you can think of. Dig up the name and email, or phone number, of as many hiring managers as you can. The more names you uncover, the more jobs you will find. The job search is a numbers game. Your job is out there somewhere and the faster you look, the faster you’ll find it. Your network alone is not enough.
Once you find them, make sure to contact them whether or not they have a job posted. This is very important. Why? At any given time, the majority of job openings are not posted. This is what’s known as the ‘hidden job market,’ which makes up over 70% of all jobs—thousands more than what you see online. So, by contacting hiring managers, you dramatically increase your opportunities for jobs—AND, you’re putting yourself at the front of the line for them, because your competition doesn’t know about them yet.
The process is simple: Choose hiring managers who could be your boss at places you’d like to work and email them with a message that says, “Hey, here I am…this is what I do…this is what I could do for you. Are you interested?” You’ll get more responses (and interviews) from this method than from hours of applying for jobs through HR. As a bonus, this is a great way to keep your job search confidential if this is necessary for you.
Download my free guide: 10 Steps to Executive Job Search Success
In this guide, you’ll see much more detailed information on how to hunt for an executive job, as well as executive-level, expert advice for your resume, cover letter, interview prep, salary negotiations, and more.
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