The Push-Button Career (And Other Executive Myths)


Thousands of prospects come to the Barrett Group every year looking for help with their executive careers. Most realize they will have to put in the necessary effort, but some have completely unrealistic expectations. For example, sometimes these executives think that finding their next career step is as easy as pushing a button to unleash the hundreds of headhunters who have been waiting anxiously to interview them.

There are indeed careers these days that can be accessed by the push of a button. Think of your last Uber or Lyft driver. Those are good, respectable push-button careers, but they are not executives either in responsibility or compensation.

So let us address a few commonly held misconceptions about the executive market:

All I need is to connect with a few headhunters…

Executive search firms are not waiting anxiously for your resume. They already have hundreds just like you in their databases. Besides, only 10% of our client landings occur in the recruiter market. (Read More)

Just get me in front of decision-makers…

If you believe this, you may well fail once you get the chance because you probably misunderstand the purpose of the interview in the first place. (Read More)

My resume is already perfect…

The chances that a one-size-fits-all resume will get you in the door are poor. We advise our clients on how to tailor their resume for every single opportunity they apply for. This greatly improves the chance of a positive reception. (Read More)

My track record speaks for itself…

Does it? Usually this phrase connotes a string of companies or titles and communicates unambiguously that the candidate is most likely overpriced vs. the market. (Read More)

I want the same job I had last time…

You mean the one where you were fired, or left because you were bored and unfulfilled, or the one that was made redundant? What about all of the other roles you could fulfill that might bring you higher compensation and more satisfaction? What about them? (Read More)

I’ll find that job when the market is ready…

In general, this is just an excuse to procrastinate. Our clients are pretty much released from the economic cycle because they learn how to tap the enormous, unpublished market where there is always a ready supply of opportunities waiting for the right candidates. (Read More)

Clearly, the instant gratification of pushing a button is illusory and finding the right executive job is more like assembling a jigsaw puzzle or a mosaic of needs, wants, and requirements so that the client’s attributes fit the demand, and the other way around.

That is why we advise clients to take the time required to assess their needs thoughtfully during the first stage of our career change process (The Clarity Program©), and then to build the rest of their search on the foundation of this initial “Targeting” step.

Here’s what two clients had to say about the Clarity Program©:

“This program made me stop and think hard about what’s important to me. We need to do that every once in a while. It was time well spent.” [Paul Turner, February 2021]

“The Clarity Program allows you to think about your own needs and interests, which as professionals with so many demands on our time both personally and professionally, we tend to put ourselves on the back burner. This allows you to identify what you want in all facets of your life and then start to develop goals that truly brings them into focus. I had several moments of “clarity” that will be helpful in both my search and next role.” [Kandy Grenier, January 2021]

One day you may well be able to push a button or ask your AI assistant to find you your next job, but for now, your best bet of discovering an executive challenge that fits all of your needs is to ask the expert in the field whose thirty-plus years of experience and demonstrated successes improve your odds of achieving true satisfaction significantly.

Hire the Barrett Group. We make it our job to help you find yours.

Peter Irish
CEO
The Barrett Group

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