Years ago, conventional wisdom held that it’s best to by no means seek out executive recruiters, aka headhunters. Instead, you should wait for them to contact you. Make the first move and you’d risk coming off as too keen if not totally desperate.
There might have been some logic to that advice within the strong job markets of yesteryear. Nowadays, however, should you don’t take the initiative, you might wait a very long time for your phone to ring or a textual content message to ping. Possibly to your whole career.
Still, some ways of connecting with executive recruiters are more efficient than others. The goal is to get on their radar without wasting your time or, heaven forbid, theirs. For example:
1. Be Seen
Not only will better professional visibility increase the chances of recruiters coming your way, it will also make it more likely they’ll recognize your name and return your calls or emails whenever you attain out to them. So, when you haven’t carried out so already, be part of the professional associations in your field and try to become active in them. Attend industry conferences and look for ways to participate as a presenter or panelist. Contribute to professional publications and websites. Make positive your LinkedIn profile is as much as date. Your photo ought to be present, too, and painting you as the desirable—and hirable—professional you are. Anything you can do to get your name on the market, wanting making a fool of your self, can help.
2. Attend Conferences
Yes, we’ve mentioned this already, however right here it is again for a unique reason. Recruiters often attend these conferences, too. It’s a great opportunity to network in what’s usually a collegial, low-pressure setting. Convey plenty of business cards and, just as necessary, get theirs.
3. Goal the Proper Recruiters
Executive search firms are inclined to specialize. Some large ones may cover multiple industries. Others focus more narrowly, similar to on a single business or a particular job skill. There’s no level losing your efforts on a firm that doesn’t recruit in your subject and should, in fact, have fewer connections there than you do.
4. Ask Around
Should you’re currently employed, you won’t need to broadcast your interest in connecting with an executive recruiter. All the same, it’s price checking with trusted colleagues and others in your network to see which recruiters they know and recommend.
Ask about their experiences (some recruiters are incredibly generous and helpful, others far less so). In case your contacts know you well sufficient and are comfortable recommending you, ask them for a referral or see whether you can use their names in introducing your self to the recruiter.
5. Check Them Out
Just as you’d investigate any firm you had been hoping to interview with, research the recruiters, too. Look up their bios on their firms’ websites and read their profiles on LinkedIn. If any of your LinkedIn connections occur to be linked to them, too, consider asking for an introduction.
6. Play It Cool
Even if you happen to really need a new job, there’s usually no point letting on. At any given time, a recruiter may or may not be working on searches for which you’d be an excellent candidate. So don’t expect outcomes immediately however try to build a relationship that will guarantee your name will be on the list— ideally, right up top—when an amazing opportunity comes along.
7. Be Useful
When you’re known within the trade, you may additionally meet recruiters when one among them checks with you as a reference for another person they’re researching as a candidate for a job. If recruiters come to depend on you as a productive, friendly and considerate information source, chances are you’ll finally be top of mind when they’re searching for a job that fits your credentials. As you talk to them, find a way to indicate that you’re always open to new opportunities yourself.
The Backside Line
Getting known by executive recruiters is a goal that needs to be part of everybody’s career planning. Start placing yourself within the way of assembly them—and being helpful to them—as early as potential in your career.
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