Teaching Old Dogs New Tricks – Take Charge of Your Career Again!

The U.S. Department of Labor recently announced that 16 million Americans are out of work. Bloomberg Television stated that for every open corporate position in the U.S., six or more executives are in pursuit.

CEOs today can expect to be in career transition almost every twelve months. Financial executives can expect to be job searching every fourteen to twenty-two months, and senior I.T. executives are typically out of work every fourteen to eighteen months. While the sources of the above statistics are unknown to me, they have been repeated to me by so many people who are not connected to each other that they appear to have become accepted as truth.

Evidently, when no one was looking, the rules changed. Yet, too many very accomplished executives still operate as if the world was operating under the “Old Normal.” With so much talented competition seeking so few open positions, in many instances the secret to career success is not necessarily having the best credentials, pedigree, or experience. But, rather those executives who are better able to compete are the ones who are landing the few open positions and achieving their objectives.

Remember when video tape player / recorders first arrived on the scene in the 1970s and 1980s? Remember the competition between BetaMax and VHS?  The commonly accepted fact is that the VHS format won, not because it was superior in any way, but merely because the proponents of VHS, an acknowledged inferior technology, put their marketing muscle behind it and outdid their competition.  BetaMax went the way of the Dinosaur and VHS reigned supreme for many years.

In, what is today an extremely competitive employment field, the shortest path to executive career success is not only through reliance on track record and achievements, but on expertly packaging the value one can provide to a company, presenting it in a concise manner that will be easily grasped, and running past job-seeking competitors to the finish line. Twice this past week, I spoke at New Jersey executive career workshops, one sponsored by a local business group, and one entitled “Take Charge of Your Career Again!” At the second event, I encountered some very senior executives who, while extremely accomplished in their respective fields, were novices in their understanding and ability to communicate their own value proposition, how to package that, and then how to present and sell it. The group spent hours working through the concepts of networking, relationship building, selling, and more.

The idea here is to be very precise, to view oneself like a product or service, with features, benefits, and outcomes, to understand the buying needs and habits of the consumer (aka employer),a nd be prepared to sell the product like a professional.  

When the workshop ended, those who had entered earlier that morning looking downtrodden and fearful of not knowing where their futures would lead them, left the event uplifted with renewed energy, new ideas and tools that they would put in use immediately to Take Charge of their careers again. Knowing that I’d used my skills to help so many, I also had an uplifting experience.

Copyright Real Estate Strategies Corporation 2009.  All Rights Reserved.

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THIS WORK IS DESIGNED TO PROVIDE PRACTICAL AND USEFUL INFORMATION ON THE SUBJECT MATTER COVERED AND REPRESENTS THE OPINION OF THE AUTHOR. HOWEVER, IT IS PROVIDED WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THE AUTHOR IS NOT ENGAGED IN RENDERING LEGAL, FINANCIAL, ACCOUNTING, OR OTHER PROFESSIONAL ADVICE TO THE READER. IF LEGAL, FINANCIAL, ACCOUNTING, OR OTHER PROFESSIONAL ADVICE IS REQUIRED, THE SERVICES OF A COMPETENT PROFESSIONAL SHOULD BE SOUGHT. THE AUTHOR SPECIFICALLY AND EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ANY LIABILITY THAT MAY BE INCURRED AS A RESULT OF THE USE OR APPLICATION OF THE INFORMATION THAT IS CONTAINED IN THIS WORK.

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