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Do you want to stand out to executive recruiters – for all the right reasons?

It helps to be aware of their best practices and how to make them work for both of you. Then you can focus your job search strategy on steps that will resonate with top hiring decision makers.

Do Your Research

Before you partner with a recruiter, research their firm’s area of expertise to ensure the relationship is a good fit.

  • Turn to trusted friends and colleagues for references. This is the first step toward building a lasting relationship. Once you have made the right executive recruiter match, you can start the engine on your successful search.
  • Ask good questions about your recruiter’s organization. Be able to glean the information you need to understand the mission and culture of the organization. From there you can make an informed decision about whether you would want to work there.
  • Consider how to best describe your skills and experience for an opening. You do not have to be a polished public speaker; however, you will have to clearly describe why you think you should be considered for a particular position.

Honesty is Key

When discussing opportunities with your recruiter, be upfront about such deal breakers as salary expectations, willingness to relocate, your reasons for considering a change and any weaknesses in your background. The more your recruiter knows about both your strengths and shortcomings, the better they can serve you.

  • Do not be offended if your recruiter asks difficult questions. They are asking for the same information a potential employer will during an interview.
  • Learn how to provide persuasive responses. Always be straightforward and honest when answering a recruiter’s questions. If a particular matter or incident does not put you in the best light, provide a full explanation. If you have made mistakes, admit them. Try and speak calmly and rationally about difficult issues.

Be Persistent, Not Pushy

The best recruiters maintain very efficient procedures, as they often are pressed for time. Follow their guidelines for maximum results.

  • Recruiters assess personality and cultural fit to the same degree they evaluate job skills. They will contact you promptly when they find a candidate/employer match. There is no need to send them daily emails or phone messages to update the status of your search.
  • Work with their processes. For instance, if your recruiter asks you to embed your resume in an email message, do not attach it. Be on time for your appointments. If additional information is requested, get right on it – the same day if possible.
  • Stay organized as you network. Keep your recruiter updated on the status of your availability and on any leads you find on your own.

Let Your Professionalism Show

If your recruiter selects you for an interview, they are putting their own reputation on the line as well. The employer’s satisfaction is a big part of their own performance evaluation. Always act with a high degree of professionalism. Show your recruiter that you will represent them well to their peers.

  • Follow the organization’s dress code. If it is business formal, do not arrive for an interview in slacks and a polo shirt. If it is business casual, do not show up in a business suit.
  • Be polite. Maintain your executive decorum and polish from the moment you arrive for an interview until you have left. Afterwards, if you really want your message to stand out, send personalized thank-you notes to everyone involved. Email may be acceptable, but text messages are not – and good old-fashioned postal mail is particularly impressive.

Contact BrainWorks for exceptional support as you advance your executive career in consumer products, CRM and direct marketing, analytics and data science, consumer insights and research, or digital marketing and e-commerce. Contact us today to set up a consultation.


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