So how does the unpublished market actually work?

What did Walter in 1985, John in 1988, Anthony in 1991, Tony in 1995, and Kristina in 2012 have in common? Each of them was a hiring executive who had a unique challenge. A hole in their organization. A business opportunity without a solution… that they had not yet advertised. They had an unpublished job opening. And, in each case, I happened to be “Johnny on the Spot” (the right person at the right time).

As a result of adroit packaging, good interviewing skills, and good fortune in each of those cases I was hired. Despite having not worked in those industries (and in some cases in those geographies) before. Why? Because the transferability of my experience was sufficiently evident through my resume and interviews.

And that is how the unpublished market works. In a nutshell:

1) Hiring manager with an unpublished opportunity
2) Candidate with excellent “packaging” and practiced interviewing skills
3) Fortuitous introduction
4) Reasonable match of requirements
5) Successful negotiation
6) Candidate lands role

For example:

Walter needed a Director of Advertising at a $140 million catalog showroom chain. I had great skills as a typographer, layout artist, and process cameraman. However, I had never managed the production of 1,000 glossy catalog pages from design through photography, copywriting, layout, prepress, and the purchasing of more than $10 million a year in rotogravure and offset printing… But my creative resume arrived on his desk at the right time and he hired me.

John needed a Director of Association Relations for the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions. I had never worked in the amusement park business. I had never been responsible for public relations. Nor had I even been associated with a major international association. But through great packaging and rehearsed interview skills, I was able to demonstrate the required transferability of my experience and he hired me.

Or what about Anthony (a VP in New Jersey)? He was surprised when his Belgian HR colleagues introduced him to an enterprising American who had proactively approached the European company with a unique booklet of achievements. Anthony needed an entrepreneur who spoke German to lead business development ex Austria in Czechoslovakia. I had never worked in the region, the industry, or the role. But, again, I was able to demonstrate the transferability of my achievements, and I did speak German. So he hired me.

The story goes on, but the same principles apply in each case.

At the Barrett Group, we’ve been helping executives clarify their career objectives and then discover the role of their choice for more than three decades. We are good at it. Ten executive clients found jobs last week, for example. Fifty landed positions between August and September. See our Front Line Reports for the evidence each week.

Or just think about the last time you needed to solve a challenge. What did you do? You probably asked people you know how they would solve it or if they know anyone they could recommend who might have advice. That is exactly what happens with hiring executives in the unpublished market: they ask people they know and/or seek referrals to people who might.

In fact, 75% of our clients land through the unpublished market because we essentially improve their chances of being that “Johnny on the Spot”.

On top of all the exceptional preparation our client teams deliver during the Targeting and Preparation stages of our five-step career change system, in the Market Access step, first we help clients greatly expand their networks on LinkedIn and then we teach clients how to continually and effectively mine this “mother of all networks”. Second, we educate our clients on how to build relationships and gain internal or at any rate trusted advocates at targeted employers who are in a position to make the introduction.

In fact, there are multiple “back doors” to gain these fortuitous introductions and we help clients find and use them. In some cases, employers actually create roles for our clients because they see the potential benefits that will accrue if they do—thanks to the excellent packaging and interview preparation our clients enjoy. Third, we support our clients with research from our extensive data resources so that they go to each meeting armed with the foreknowledge required to be perceived as the best candidate.

Then, of course, there is the remarkable success our negotiation coaches have in helping clients increase the value of any offer the prospective employer extends—usually by tens of thousands of dollars (and often more) in total compensation and benefits.

So it is no wonder that satisfied clients summarize their Barrett Group experiences like this excerpt from a recent success study interview:

“The Barrett Group is very good at teaching you to navigate LinkedIn to find primary and secondary contacts. If you want to apply for a job and you can identify someone at the company [as an internal advocate], that will strengthen your position during the application process. You will have a much better chance of pushing your candidacy forward,” said Advik. “That’s the key. The Barrett Group is good with identifying and employing these strategies. […] Obviously, the whole thing is a process – it takes time. I came away feeling that The Barrett Group genuinely watches out for their clients’ best interests.” [Advik, 2021, Read More]

We take the mystery out of the unpublished market and that means faster and more profitable landings for our executive clients. Frustrated with how your search is going? There is a better way. Give us a call.

Peter Irish
The Barrett Group

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