I used to humble brag about the number of recruiters who reached out to me (yeah I was that guy). I pursued some, but most of them didn’t go very far because they weren’t interesting or a good fit for me.
Being recruited is flattering and validating. It means you’ve built a strong professional brand based on your work, expertise and accomplishments. But if you haven’t created a benchmark with your most important criteria for a role and company — you’re rolling the dice on whether it’s the right job or not for you.
After talking to hundreds of people about their careers, a common theme has surfaced: most have an organic career. They change jobs when an opportunity comes to them from a recruiter, colleague, former manager or friend or when they get a promotion. Even when it turns out to be a great job, many wonder if they could’ve made a more strategic move — putting them on a better career trajectory.
When I look across all of our clients, only a handful have landed dream jobs that originated from a recruiter or someone who reached out to them. The big difference for them is that they had established their benchmark and were able to see how closely it aligned with their values and goals.
Most of our clients take a proactive approach. They create a target company and role list. They leverage their network to get in front of hiring managers and recruiters to learn more about existing opportunities and surface upcoming ones. And of course they evaluate each company and opportunity against their benchmark.
They’ve made an intentional career move founded on self reflection and intention — which not only set them up for success, but has also led them to a series of rich and meaningful roles and experiences.
And here’s the good news: you can do it too!
Here are the exercises and steps that I share with our clients.
- Establish a benchmark based on the criteria most important to you.
- Identify target companies and roles, then map 1st and 2nd degree connections to network strategically.
- Prep and prepare for informationals to make a great impression and surface the right opportunities.
By investing nominal time and attention, you’ll be able to start an intentional career and land a job you’ll love and thrive in!
P.S. Are you ready to uplevel your career and land a job where you’ll feel fulfilled, realize your potential and get the comp you deserve? If so, then watch our video and book a session with one of our job strategists. We’re excited to talk with you!