During my 40-year work career I had the good fortune to be employed by seven different Fortune 500 size companies in the financial services industry. While the math suggests that my average tenure at each company was a bit less than six years, the fact is, I spent 26 years at the last two companies that employed me.
While I never considered myself a “job hopper” I figured out early on that there were a few steps I could take that might help me build my network, become more aware of additional opportunities for career growth that might come my way and my strengths and weaknesses. Here are a couple of the strategies I employed in these areas over my career.
Always have an updated resume on hand. When I did make a job change, one of the first things I would do is update my resume to show my new employer, the date I started and my duties and responsibilities. I would do this not because I was interested in leaving that employer, but because I wanted to always be prepared if an opportunity came along and I was asked to send someone a resume. Of course, over the ensuing months and years I would continue to update my resume to make sure it remained current.
Network with recruiters. In my industry I would periodically get calls from search firms to assess my interest in other opportunities on which they were working. While most of the time the positions were not right for me, I would always offer to make introductions to others who might have an interest in these positions and/or know of others who might be candidates. Over the years this resulted in my developing strong personal relationships with recruiters, several of whom I remain in contact with to this day who have appreciated my help with their careers over the years.
Accept a couple of job interviews each year. During my career I regularly interviewed candidates for open positions that I was trying to fill. As a result, I became proficient at assessing talent, and attracting new associates to my organizations.
Over the years, I learned that, while I was good at interviewing others, that skill didn’t necessarily translate to being a good interviewee when the tables were turned. I learned t hat being interviewed is an entirely different conversation than interviewing someone else. For me, the only way I found I could improve in this area was to periodically be interviewed for a job. Even if the position wasn’t a fit, what I learned was that as I would debrief the interview in my mind, I always came up with something I could have done or said differently which would pay dividends in future interviews.
I was reminded of some of the techniques and strategies that I employed during my career when I came across this article in the November 3, 2022, issue of The Wall Street Journal by Callum Borchers.
Whether or not you’re in the job market, I think you’ll find his insights interesting and perhaps worth passing along to someone you know. Enjoy!