Everyone in my industry writes a list of things job seekers should do during the crazy time of every year that begins about mid-November, but as a CFO … what should you avoid? Here’s a “don’t list” for Chief Financial Officer job search candidates.
— Don’t neglect networking or drive away potential contacts between now and the end of the year. Social engagements are a great time to re-connect in a completely relaxed and non-defensive atmosphere. Don’t ruin future potential leads by ramming your business card or resume in their faces. That is not the time nor the place.
Instead, follow up after the party in order to schedule a time for a face-to-face meeting.
— Don’t introduce yourself as “unemployed” or “looking for a job” or even as “currently in job search mode.” That is not who you are, it is merely your current situation. A brand of “unemployed” is not helpful to you nor is it the “first impression” you want to leave with new and potentially helpful contacts.
Rather, identify your brand and exploit that positioning in your introduction, business cards, and email signature line. Your brand transcends your employment situation.
— Don’t buy into the misconception that no hiring happens during the last two weeks of the year (or over the summer). It does. So keep the pedal to the metal to maintain your momentum heading into the first of the year.
This is a good time to network, focus on raising your visibility, and create or fine-tune your 2014 career management plan.
— Don’t wait until you lose your job before you think about your next position. To do so, negatively impacts your marketability and positioning more than you can imagine … at least until you have to defend why you’re now unemployed. That positioning can have an unfavorable impact on your search, your candidacy, and your salary package.
The high-value CFO candidate in 2014 is not only a transformational strategist, but he is in full control of his career.