Let’s face it: CFOs are not the best networkers. Some of us are better than others, but for the most part we sit in our offices and manage numbers, strategy, administration, IT infrastructure and whatever else falls under our purview – responsibilities which seem to be growing every year. But the reality is that we all need to be great networkers.
Very few of us have the luxury of sitting back and letting the world come to us especially when it comes to maintaining an executive presence. Maintaining and raising your executive profile is an exercise in continuous improvement and one that pays dividends in a competitive executive job market.
Here are a number of ways that you can stay relevant and active even when you’re not conducting an executive job search:
Learning the tricks of searching for an executive job is not difficult; it just takes some common sense, discipline and a positive upbeat attitude. Most people learn the basic techniques as they begin a search but here are some additional tips that will help make a search successful.
Set Daily Goals – One approach that has served me well was to set goals for myself. I try and make at least 10 connections a day. A connection does not mean that someone has to respond but it is a note, phone call or a face to face meeting with someone. There are days when I exceed it and there are days when I don’t hit my goal, but the goal pushes me to find ways to connect with as many people as I can.
Most executives like a good challenge, and I am no exception, but the executive job search process has certainly tested my resolve. At the end of last year, I became part of the unemployed population because I successfully helped sell a company to a public strategic buyer that did not need any corporate personnel. I knew at the outset of this transaction that I was putting myself out of a job, but I saw the sale through to closing in hopes that this experience would make me a more well-rounded and attractive senior executive.