How to Prepare Yourself

As the whole world is changing, it is no surprise there has been a fundamental transformation in the process of finding a job. The constant and ever quickening change of the world necessitates that the talent, skills and performance are adapted to the demands of the new order.


AIMS International planisphere

The strategy of finding a job depends on the situation; did the candidate lose a job or was the job change self-driven? In either case, there are crucial paths that lead the candidates through the process. Mihaela Perianu (AIMS Romania) indicates, “Now is the time we should invest more in our personal branding and in building on our reputation.” A critical first step in the process is to set objectives and highlight them in a properly prepared CV. This CV can then be sent to companies for positions whose requirements overlap with the candidate’s experience and expectations. Jerzy Potocki (AIMS Poland), emphasizes that it is very important to have a proper CV, in which people usually are not being clear enough about their professional objectives. Furthermore, Maria Shishkova (AIMS Bulgaria & Macedonia) recommends, “…customize your cover letter and the CV according to the employer and highlight the relevant experience and motivation required by the potential employer.” She also points out that deeper market analysis will bring more unusual opportunities especially when working with an experienced search professional. John W. Poracky (AIMS USA) states that it is crucial for the candidates to be proactive in their approach to finding a job. Also according to Bernt Entschev (AIMS Brasil), the candidate should be alert to the market’s movements and tendencies, and be connected to the HR consultancies’ movements and general job announcements. If the candidate has prepared his CV properly, is very alert and proactive in the process and is being assisted by a professional search agent, she/he could still be forgetting one very important point – networking. Networking is considered as the key to landing a job and the Brazilian statistics show that 30% of the positions are filled through networking. Mihaela Perianu points out candidates should use more channels to market themselves. Alongside partnering with executive search companies, candidates should also be active in business networking. They should attend business events to make their candidacy known to a wider network of people. Even though times have been more challenging during the global economic crisis, Carlos F. Ordas (AIMS Spain) suggests candidates utilizing this time to identify and know our own deficiencies. He states this is a precious gift for self-knowledge to carefully examine out strong and weak points, and set forth realistic plans for further training. Any candidate searching for a job is on the right course with a combination of good skills, strong networking and the proper assistance of a headhunter. However, they do need to be proactive in their approach and be alert to the market’s movements.

There have always been ideal characteristics required for being leaders including a blend of strategic thinking, outstanding operational focus, readiness for change, honesty, transparency, solid team-building skills and good crisis management. Carlos F. Ordas classifies the features as the objectively valued ones such as age, education, spoken languages and experience, and as the ones to be evaluated like the continuum intelligence and personality. He implies that headhunters and recruiters work in assessing personal traits as the differentiating factors. An essential feature that pulls the candidate ahead of the competition is an upward trajectory proving the person’s ability to grow professionally. Bernt Entschev and John W. Poracky both agree that the CV of the candidate must focus on listing their responsibilities, actions taken and the business results or, in other words, the measurable accomplishments. John W. Poracky indicates, “abstract accomplishments are important as well, but the measurable ones still ‘shine’ and stand out in a special way through the contractor’s eyes”. Compared to the past, required characteristics of today’s leader differ in some ways. Jerzy Potocki points out these characteristics as being more flexible, being able to provide service efficiency even during cost control, and being able to work with smaller teams and yet getting better results. Maria Shishkova agrees by emphasizing, “creative and innovative thinking combined with the possibility to achieve profitable results within less than generous budgets would be a difficult combination to find but would be a strong differentiator and motivator for almost any employer.

Besides the universal characteristics of an ideal manager, there are also significant requirements for each country’s unique business methods. For John W. Poracky, the characteristics they seek in recruiting senior level talent include; having a measurable track record, being able to acquire new skills, using your skills to add value for the business, being a team player, and having a high level of integrity. Similarly, Bernt Entschev emphasizes, “The ability to lead people and work with them is very important in every organization, but in a country with such cultural diversity, it becomes totally indispensable. Meanwhile, there must be flexibility to deal about surroundings’ changes and uncertainties.” Jerzy Potocki agrees that today a manager most importantly needs to be more flexible compared to the past; and as most of the Polish managers are asked to cover the entire European region, they need to be flexible with different cultures, different management types, and different countries. This goes hand in hand with having very good language skills. In Romania, the circumstances are more challenging though. As the country experienced a transition from communism to democracy, in the past 20 years they had a huge economic growth. Mihaela Perianu recapitulates the situation in Romania, “…business people did not have to refine their working habits and the business etiquette. Money was easy to be made in this country. All in all, what we had in the past 20 years of democracy, is managers for good times, managers that did not have to struggle too much in terms of refining their mission, vision and strategy of business… consequently they developed management abilities for good times only.” So obviously, Romania lacks for managers for bad times. Evidently, to be distinguished among the competitive atmosphere, today’s managers have to confront more requirements compared to the past. And it is their advantage to get assistance of a headhunting agency who understands the overlapping demands of managers and companies around the world.

How to Be a “Highly Sought After Manager” in 11 steps:
1 Set your objectives
2 Have a proper CV
3 Make a deep market analysis
4 Be proactive in your approach
5 Be connected to the HR consultancies’ movements
6 Have a strong network and spread out the word around
7 Consider the crisis as a chance to know your deficiencies
8 Be flexible and a team worker
9 Be creative and innovative
10 Be good at cost control
11 Be the manager for both good and bad times


Published in the hard-copy of Work Style Magazine, Winter 2009