Ivy Exec Spotlight - From Consultant to Full-time and Personal Commitments


In this week of the Ivy Exec blog spotlight, we repost Brad Attig's question and answer session regarding transitioning from consultant to a full time position, and how to balance job requirements with long term personal commitments during a job search.

Question: I have 15 years broad and in depth experience in human resource management. However, I’ve been a contract consultant through all of it. My assignments have been anywhere between 3 to 18 months working from my client’s site.

I’ve been networking actively to find a new position and truly want to join a firm full time.

I have had several networking meetings and even a few job-specific interviews. However, in each case, the person I’m meeting with is reluctant to refer me further because they assume that having been a contractor, my value to my client’s has been less than had I been an employee. I have tried to persuade them otherwise but have so far been unsuccessful.

While I’ve had seaches with lean results in the past, something always turned up – until now. After several months, I seem to be spinning my wheels. I’m located in Toronto and do not wish to relocate due to family reasons.

Any thoughts? Suggestions?

Brad: I would try to examine exactly why they feel you would be less valuable as a full-time employee. People are hired because they can do the job functionally and are a good “fit”. It would seem that these in-depth contract assignments you have had would prove your ability to really understand the nuances of your clients’ businesses as well as success working within a “system”.

I would look strongly also at the types of places and industries you are networking into. perhaps where you have been looking are places that are less comfortable hiring entrepreneurs. For every place that is not comfortable doing so, I would have to think that there are others that would see the value and initiative you could bring to the position. In this same vein, I would try networking into smaller, entrepreneurial type organizations. Best of Luck in your search,


Question: I am the primary caregiver for an elderly parent whose condition may worsen and demand more of my time. How much of this should I reveal in either networking meetings or formal interviews? I do not want to destroy opportunities for a possible offer too quickly but also want to make sure possible constraints that could affect such things as work schedules or travel are addressed?

Brad: In the beginning stages of either networking meetings or formal interviews the focus should be on advancing your candidacy for a position. Conversations should center on proving that your background and experience make you the most viable individual. Personal or family issues really are not the business of your potential employer. Your ability to do the work required is how you should be evaluated.

Pay attention to what is revealed about such issues as percentage of time that is required for business travel and daily work schedules. If, in fact, you cannot commit to work a regular work week, hours-wise you need of course to be upfront with your evaluator. Similarly, if you can say never be away from home for more than a night, again it is best for you to be honest.

Realize, however, that if you generally can commit to such requirements but need from time to time some flexibility that these conversations can take place at the point of an offer. Employers these days are recognizing the importance of the getting the right person in the job. Hence, they can be flexible to accommodating personal needs as long as they can be assured that you will deliver on the job.

About Ivy Exec

This article was reposted from the Ivy Exec Blog. Ivy Exec is a career resource partner of AESC/BlueSteps - a highly selective, invitation-only career site founded by a team of Columbia MBAs to address the unique career needs of top executives. Ivy Exec is a trusted recruiting tool used by companies such as JPMorgan, Deutsche Bank, Deloitte, Google, Prada, and other upper echelon firms looking to hire high-calibre executives.

Ivy Exec has agreed to provide the AESC and BlueSteps community complimentary All-Access membership should you be approved to join. As an All-Access member, you will have access to over 17,000 international job listings, industry intelligence reports, and the option to build a profile searchable by over 600 leading companies.  

The Ultimate Executive Career Guide: Connecting with Executive Search

As a senior-level executive, you can use this guide to:
- Learn about executive search and how it differs from other forms of recruiting
- Discover the best ways to connect with executive search professionals
- Understand how the search process works
- Implement strategies that will help you become visible to the search community
- And more!

Download Now!

About the author

BlueSteps's picture

About BlueSteps

BlueSteps empowers executives to reach their career goals with strategic career planning.


At BlueSteps, we thoughtfully create career management solutions that are designed to help leaders advance their careers, stay on track to build a long-term career playbook, and become a strong leader. Our tools and resources will help you:
  • Advance your career with tools to keep you on track. 
  • Access insider job market intelligence from the experts.
  • Identify and network with the right recruiters.
  • Discover executive jobs and board positions not found elsewhere.
  • Connect with world class career advisors for support when you need it.

Start Owning Your Career Journey >>

Other posts by this author

Share your thoughts

Stay Connected