Conversations with an executive recruiting consultant


Looking for jobs – career newspaper headlines. Career is a term defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as an individual’s “course or progress through life (or a distinct portion of life)”. It usually is considered to pertain to remunerative work (and sometimes also formal education).
A career is mostly seen as a course of successive situations that make up a person’s occupation. One can have a sporting career or a musical career without being a professional athlete or musician, but most frequently ‘career’ in the 20th century referenced the series of jobs or positions by which one earned one’s money. It tended to look only at the past.
I had the opportunity this week to catch up with a friend who has setup her own recruiting consultancy in Singapore. It was an awesome discussion on the industry of recruiting and how competitive it is and what it means for an executive in land of opportunities. I took the opportunity to pick her brain on some of the things that potential executive recruits should find important. I did end up getting some great pointers that will help all of us be sell-able and in the game for a long time.
–  Asian executives don’t spend as much time as they should on self branding.
I kind-off had a hint on this for the longest time but got a confirmation from someone who is the industry. Many Asian executives are still not harnessing the potential of social networking and self branding. Maybe it’s just too tough to get on to the bandwagon of social networking like LinkedIn and blogs. For some it’s a technology challenge and for some it’s a mindset issue.  But as the landscape changes not having an online presence is like retiring from the game itself. When I speak to many executives the common complaint is who has the time. Well if you want to be relevant and sell-able then guess what you have to commit to it.
–  Recruiters are Googling for you
Most recruiters do background checks on people on the internet. The next bad thing of having nothing about you online is having something nasty and embarrassing about you online. Be extremely careful about what you say or do online as it could separate you from that dream job you have been searching for. I wrote a post sometime back on thisBeing responsible about your social media status updates’
– Building diversity in your organization is good
It’s quite human to get comfortable with people from your own race, country or religion. Though most companies proclaim they are fair and they don’t look at ethnic or religious background, the fact of the matter is that some executives knowingly or unknowingly hire people with same backgrounds as them. Building diversity in organization is paramount important to keeping the organization healthy, vibrant and fair. I am a firm believer that nothing replaces the vibrancy and benefits of diverse views and cultures at the work place.  Let me also put in a word for diversity of gender in the argument as well. In Asia we still have industries that are strangle-hold of males and that needs to change. Pretty convinced managers who have managed more diverse teams have a better opportunities going forward in a highly connected world.
–  The best opportunities are never advertised and even if they are the decisions are almost mostly pre-decided.
One needs to network, be out there and be seen. No one ever achieved anything brilliant by working within themselves. You own your career development and you own the responsibility of building awareness about your skill sets in your industry. Socialize offline and online, connect people together, build friendships and you will be always the first to know of opportunities that are can categorized as ‘once in a life time’.

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