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Rebooting your Tired Career

Posted by | January 22, 2015 | Advice, Career

Via LinkedIn :

Understand the Value of Experience over Five Years Old

Identify your Transferable Skills

Identify your Best Job Market

Re-entering the Job Market

This post talks about how to re-enter the job market after a break, losing or leaving your job, or perhaps you have decided to switch industries. Either way, if you have not job hunted for a while, you may find the employment market landscape has changed considerably since you left. So how do you get back on the horse and find a new role?

Reasons for a new Job

The reasons executives start looking for a new role can be complex. In our experience each case is different. Take a look at the list below and see if you can relate to any of them;

  • You’re bored – you have effectively conquered your existing role and it offers no challenge. You are looking for something new
  • You find your role and responsibilities diminishing as new structures emerge in the company
  • Your role is about to be made redundant
  • You are tired of your current industry and want to work in a different sector
  • You wish to return to work after a period of starting your own business

Although this is not an exhaustive list, these are the most common ones we see day in day out.

Relying on Past Experience May not get you very far

If your experience in a given industry sector is over five years old the chances are will be discounted by decision makers. Experience can be pigeonholed as outmoded if it was sometime in the past, even if you were considered knowledgeable at the time.

Targeting the Wrong Employment Market

Globalisation and global decisions affect your career prospects. For example, the recent cuts in oil and gas prices are having an impact on the employment market in the industries. BP for example is cutting jobs. Similarly, in some countries the banking sector is making redundancies.

Although this looks gloomy from the outset, other parts of the world the same or similar industries are doing well and skills in these sectors are in demand. Singapore for example is currently looking to recruit executives with banking experience.

Therefore, it makes sense to look for a job where the jobs are available rather than wait for the market to change in your own country.

Country Restrictions

Depending on where you are eligible to work, will also effect whether or not a recruiter and or head hunter will work with you. The EU makes it very difficult for the non- EU residents to work in the EU member states. The USA has similar restrictions.

In other regions such as the Middle East and Asia, restrictions are not so stringent because they tend to rely heavily on the expat expertise. Usually, once the candidate is approved, the employer will arrange the visa and the work permit. Therefore, before you decide to apply for a job abroad, check what conditions you are required to meet. If you are outside of the EU and do not have a work permit, it is highly unlikely that a UK-based recruiter or head hunter will work with you.

One CV to fit all types of Applications

Another scenario we often see is that skills on a CV are to generic. They are not specific enough and as such do not speak the right language to head hunters and recruiters. You may have held C-level positions, but so have your competitors. Your past positions like your past experience will not be enough to land you a role on their own. Each application needs a CV tailored to to show your value proposition to the company for the individual role. I.e. skills and achievements relevant to the position.

You need to demonstrate how your skills and experience make you a good candidate for a specific industry sector, type of a company etc. Do not expect recruiters to infer it from your job titles or a description of your responsibilities.

Transferable Skills

You do not need to be a detective to realise that this is simply identifying the skills that can be marketed from role to role. The trick is doing it accurately.

Case Study – Frank

One of our recent clients who’ll we call Frank came to us after running his own business for a number of years. He started his own consultancy company after being made redundant from the consortium he worked for. Frank’s task was purchasing aeroplanes on behalf of NATO.

When he approached head hunters and recruiters, he would never get a response. Once we saw his CV and LinkedIn profile we discovered his LinkedIn profile was fine, but his CV was not targeted towards the right market. In essence he was too generic with his skills.

We highlighted Frank’s transferable skills and he resubmitted his CV to recruiters and head hunters. Soon he had a number of offers and has recently landed a turnaround project role in the Middle East. Frank was offered several positions and so was able to choose the one he felt was right for him. The role he did opt for was not advertised on job boards, but was located in what we call in the trade the hidden job market.

The Hidden Job Market

It is believed that a high percentage of the best jobs are awarded via the hidden job market which is not advertised online or offline. They are awarded on a word of mouth basis by decision makers. It is believed that the only way to access the hidden job market is to do so via head hunters and recruiters.


Beata Staszkow is an accomplished MBA-calibre Global Careers Management Consultant and Executive Manager, with international and UK experience in managing professional services, higher education and membership organisations. The Founder and General Manager of Mentor EU she has been working on multiple career transition and outplacement projects with Workstream Consulting, KGHM Ecoren or Career Intelligence.

With 20 years of a fulfilling management and consulting career in Europe and profound expertise in the global market place, she has been successfully helping senior executive clients across the globe, looking for more rewarding careers.

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