Lance Winn, executive vice president of DHR International, a leading provider of global executive search solutions, offers these nuggets of advice for executives faced with a career change:
▶ Be proactive. Which companies or industries interest you? Don’t wait to read about a company relocating to your area before you do your research.
▶ Utilize your network. Introductions and endorsements are huge in a job transition. Keep a journal of who you talked to and the resumes you have sent.
▶ Have a strategic plan. Where do you want to be in three to five years?
▶ Focus on your skill set and strengths. Be flexible. Entrepreneurial skills are a must if you shift from a big platform, heavy infrastructure company to a start-up where everyone wears many hats.
▶ A resume is just a tool. “I emphasize to many seasoned executives that they should have more than one resume –as long as the integrity of the resume is intact,” said Winn. A resume that emphasizes operational expertise when a company is looking for a COO, VP, or chief of staff and a second resume which focuses on experience in employee relations, compensation or recruiting.
▶ Hone your interview skills. “Many executives have not interviewed for a job in a long time,” said Winn. Be a good listener, anticipate questions and have answers, he advised.
▶ When you are asked why you are making a career change or what your expected compensation is, be prepared to answer directly and honestly.
“I challenge executives to be creative and think how they are going to repackage themselves,” said Winn. “The process should be a journey and not a sprint.”
Linda Simpson/ Special to Las Vegas Business Press