“I don’t want to be the school principal that doles out punishment,” said during our initial consultation. “The culture here is borderline oppressive and it comes straight from the top.” Too much of her job was focused on enforcing strict rules, keeping track of write-ups and performance improvement plans. The rate of terminating people … Continued

Wednesday anecdote: COO needed some wind in her sails to keep going. She had twelve opportunities that invited her to interview on-site in nearly a year on the market. There were still more interviews that didn’t progress out of the phone or video stage. She was a finalist for 5 of them. Still hadn’t claimed … Continued

Wednesday anecdote: COO needed new branding statement to win next job. “I feel like my interviews get started a little slowly,” she said when we first visited. “I warm up later in the process but it doesn’t seem to get out of the gates well.” She needed help with her branding statement. It goes by … Continued

Wednesday anecdote: Downsized employee not happy with outplacement services offered. “It was a waste of my time,” she said. “I don’t know why they bothered spending money on those services. It was just one more insult.” It’s never a joy to go through a downsizing. This client was laid off as part of a large … Continued

When she first came aboard as a client she was frustrated. Though she had enjoyed a successful career as a human resources leader she had yet to work for an organization that truly valued the role. Her previous companies always viewed her as a junior member of the leadership team. “While the title is important,” … Continued

Client Anecdote: Big company executive changed job to lead small company. Going through a job change is never easy. “I’ve always led divisions of large companies,” he said when we first visited. “Big budgets. Lots of resources. A team of people around me. That was my world.” This time he wanted something different. The corporate … Continued

He talked too much. Plain and simple. Super nice guy, though. You wouldn’t mind hanging out with him for a while and listening to stories over a beer. But it would definitely be listening versus sharing stories. There wouldn’t be an opportunity to get one in of your own. This isn’t just one client’s story. … Continued

“I don’t want to do this any more,” our client shared. “This is too difficult. I’m worn out.” It’s a predictable pattern. The first 30 days are full of activity. Rebuilding the career marketing materials is energizing. Clients see a dramatic upgrade in their professional presentation. Learning how to interview powerfully to proactively drive value … Continued

“You’d be proud of me,” he said during our interview debrief. “I closed hard at the end and the guy nearly jumped out of his seat. I think he was more excited than I was.” Sales managers absolutely love interviewing candidates who know how to close for commitments. Why? They desperately need them on their … Continued

“I’ve never really learned how to interview,” my client shared with me. “I never had to. I’m a nurse.” The nursing shortage in the US has made it a long standing candidate’s market. An RN could quit a job today and be working somewhere else tomorrow without trying too hard. For those who want to … Continued

It’s the law of averages. Any PE or VC firm that has 5 or more portfolio companies will have at least one that is not hitting its targets. Most partners don’t want to admit this in the first conversation. They don’t want the world to know some of their investments are tanking. We teach our … Continued

It’s a big jump to go from individual producer in sales to district or regional manager leading a team. It’s an even bigger jump to reach the level of national vice president of sales. The first call with this client was a bit of a dance. It started off with a lot of posturing. He … Continued

It’s a gut punch. When you’re the front runner for a job you really want and you don’t get it, it takes a toll. A recent client went through this. He was up for the COO spot. A good friend from grad school was the CFO. That’s how he learned about the opportunity. Throughout each … Continued

“It’s just not the same as it was,” she said. “It was a lot of fun several years ago when we were growing explosively. But now, it’s just another big corporation.” From an outsider’s view it looked like she should be on top of the world. She was one of the early employees with a … Continued

“I took this job straight out of training because it was the best one I could find,” my new surgeon client shared. “But, I’m ready to be in a larger market. Unfortunately, I don’t see any jobs posted there.” There are jobs available in the major metros for physicians. But, they are rarely outsourced to … Continued

A little over a year ago I visited with a VP of HR. She was considering making a change. Her former CEO and mentor was retiring and she wasn’t quite sure of the new person coming in. Ultimately, she decided to wait and see how things played out. Good news for her. She loved the … Continued