By Wendy S. Enelow, CCM, MRW, JCTC, CPRW
Enelow Enterprises, Inc.
For true job search success, you must focus yourself and your campaign on the 3 M’s – Mindset, Merchandising, and Multichannel.
MINDSET – Executive job search is sales, pure and simple. You have a product to promote (yourself), and you must create a strategic marketing campaign to sell that product. It is an active process to which you must commit your time, energy, and financial resources. No product is ever sold if it sits quietly on the shelf. It’s all about market visibility – in the right places at the right times.
It’s also about having a clear mindset as to your value in the marketplace. With each passing day, the market becomes more competitive, and the candidates who manage their campaigns well are the candidates who receive the offers and opportunities. It is not necessarily the most qualified candidate who gets the position; it may be the individual who most effectively manages his or her search campaign. Therefore, your value must be clearly and concisely communicated, for it is the foundation for your entire campaign and your market success. It is what prospective employers and recruiters will want to buy, so be clear to communicate what you are selling.
MERCHANDISING – Designing and writing powerful job search communications (e.g., resumes, cover letters, executive career profiles) requires a strong focus on merchandising your qualifications, achievements, successes, skills, and knowledge. In theory, you want to lay ALL of your experience on the table; then pick, choose, and merchandise those items that are most related to your current career objectives. Communicate who you “want to be” and NOT “who you have been.”
Consider the following example of merchandising your resume. Assume you’re a Chief Marketing Officer with three different objectives. Objective #1 is another CMO position; objective #2 is a COO/CEO position; objective #3 is an International Business Development position. How you merchandise your qualifications and expertise will vary significantly between the three versions so that you are able to bring to the forefront the core skills and experience you have that are most related to those three different objectives.
It is also critical that you appropriately merchandise your letters. Remember, you’re taking your entire career, consolidating it into a 1-3 page executive resume focused on your current objectives, and then consolidating it even further into a 2-3 paragraph executive cover letter. Yet, despite the consolidation, you must still focus on merchandising the same core qualifications.
MULTICHANNEL – An integrated approach that uses multiple channels of distribution is what typifies a winning job search campaign. Use each and every channel that is appropriate for your search objectives. This should include networking, ad responses, targeted direct mail and email campaigns, Internet resume postings, Internet job postings (ChiefMonster.com is the #1 source), and executive job lead reports. Think of your multichannel campaign as a wheel with many spokes, each of which is vital and each of which contributes to your overall ability to move your campaign forward.
Consider the 3 M’s to job search success as your new mantra and repeat the words over and over – Mindset, Merchandising, and Multichannel. If you can effectively build your campaign around these concepts, you will be one of the fortunate ones whose search campaign is quick, efficient, and successful.