Research to the Rescue

Many executives come to us with wide-eyed looks. They mix trepidation with astonishment because they realize they have absolutely no idea how to find a suitable position in today’s market.

Often it has been years, possibly decades, since they looked for a job.

Sometimes they desperately want to change industries, roles, and locations. And, again, have no idea where to start.

Occasionally they are suddenly unemployed and looking for a leg up.

In all of these cases and many more, we calmly start by helping them slow down… to speed up.

The Clarity Program© helps clients deeply reflect on where they are. Clients learn where they really want to go. Here is how one client reflected on his Clarity Program© experience:

“Towards the end, [David, his Clarity Coach] asked me to write about my dream job. I typed out where I wanted to live, what my office was like, and how my family fit into the picture. I’ve been through coaching and personality assessments before, but not like this. David’s insights and the simple tasks he assigned me gave me a clearer vision of myself and my goals. I felt so hopeful!” [Joel Engle, Read more]

Next comes the packaging and personal branding stage. Here, we convert their history and accomplishments into a set of structured arguments. These naturally lead from where they have been professionally, to where they wish to go.

There are innumerable ways to demonstrate the transferability of experience and thereby justify a change of direction mid-career—if you know how.

Fortunately, we do.

Then comes the complex business of winnowing down the market approach to a manageable strategy. Our clients are supported by a team of six professionals. One member of their team is a research specialist. The Barrett Group has one of the most extensive database architectures in the business—one of the reasons Forbes cites us in the top 0.5% of the industry. We cover more than 800 million businesses and executives via this infrastructure. If a client defines their data requests too broadly, they are often shocked at the amount of work they need to personally do in order to contact all of the executives that our research provides.

We have been supporting clients now for more than three decades. We actively help clients to avoid this situation by guiding them toward a data funneling process. In other words, with the output of the Clarity Program© in hand, we ask clients to screen their objectives at a high level, be they geographic, industry-vertical, or role-related—or all three. This produces a broad brush understanding of the potential targets. From there we guide clients to consider an intermediate culling of that large list to a more detailed specific list of target employers. Lastly, as interviews loom, clients approach us for specific data on the hiring manager and company profile to make sure they are ideally prepared for their critical first and/or follow-up interviews.

Dan Resendes, our Chief Consulting Officer Emeritus, narrates one specific example. This is an overview of a research team success story. It resulted in three interviews at the client’s targeted type of organization. 

1) The client had originally requested that our research team provide him with the names, email addresses and telephone numbers of hiring executives working at LGBTQ+ organizations across 18 different industries. (This type of research would have taken weeks and is akin to running around the block 15 times to walk in the front door.) 

2) Additionally, If we conducted the research using the methodology he requested he would have had to make hundreds of cold calls, to sell his “elevator speech” to total strangers in an attempt to secure an interview. 

3) When the research team received his request, they provided him with a) much more precise information b) and a different methodology c) where he could target the exact type of executive he requested d) who would then recruit him, e) without having to use an elevator speech or make a single cold call. 

4) The end result was that he followed the research team’s instructions and just by clicking on a few research lists provided and speaking to people already in his social capital he easily secured 3 interviews within 2 weeks at the organizations of his choice. 

It does not get any better than that.

B. Randall Willis, a recent client, narrates his Barrett Group [TBG] research experience like this:

…Randall employed a strategy that he had used during a previous career change: Identify marketing companies that were potentially good fits and reach out to them directly. The TBG research team helped by producing a list of 650 agencies for Randall to explore.

“I gave TBG certain criteria, such as agencies only in the Northeast and 200 people or fewer. I researched every company on the list and whittled the number to around 30. Then I reached out to them. [TBG] helped me draft the language. About half responded, and I engaged in conversations with about two or three.”

One company turned out to be an ideal fit – a small, internet marketing firm at which the CEO plans to retire and is seeking a successor. Randall was offered the role of head of client success, with the potential to become a managing director within months and, ultimately, CEO and owner. This opportunity is the sweet spot for Randall between the corporate and entrepreneurial worlds.

“It’s better than I ever could have expected. It’s not too corporate-y. The team has some growing and areas for improvement that I can help with, but I am starting with a good team,” said Randall.

Randall is thrilled with how his career change journey ends. [B. Randall Willis, Read more.]

The executive employment market is daunting, but you don’t have to feel alone. All you need is a little support. The research team at The Barrett Group can come to your rescue! Give us a call.

Peter Irish, CEO
The Barrett Group

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