30 April 2015
When Nina Mufleh moved to San Francisco in hopes of landing a job at Airbnb, she quickly realized just how competitive obtaining a position at the company was. She had been a host at Airbnb for some time and decided it was time to take on the transition to working directly for the company, but didn’t take into account how difficult it would be to get her resume past the hordes of others coming in daily. Catching the attention of the CEO and/or hiring manager(s) of her target company didn’t prove to be easy, so she took matters into her own hands; rather than submit a run-of-the-mill resume and wait for a response that may never come, she created a unique online report that was part presentation, part resume to help herself stand out amongst the masses—and it worked. Nina registered a domain at www.nina4airbnb.com, where she set up a report that explored unchartered territory for Airbnb in the Middle East and what the benefits would be of expanding into that area. She provided solid numbers, examples, and resources for the company’s potential expansion, before wrapping up the presentation neatly with her own qualifications and how she could help the company achieve those goals. She then tweeted the report directly to Airbnb’s hiring managers, who caught sight of it and offered her an interview on the spot: @ninamufleh I am reviewing right now. Very impressive 🙂 — Brian Chesky (@bchesky) April 21, 2015 Ok. You floored me with this brilliance. We’ll set something up for us to meet. I love your smarts. Very much. https://t.co/EaIwOHSywo — Jonathan Mildenhall (@Mildenhall) April 21, 2015 When you’re as passionate as Nina about a certain company’s mission, such responses coming from your dream company’s CEO and CMO are beyond ideal. So, what exactly is it about Nina4Airbnb that made Nina so attractive as a candidate? It shows initiative and creativity. Nina created an unsolicited report on potential opportunities for the company, showing not only that she’s a creative and insightful professional, but that she’s proactive and seeks opportunities rather than expecting them to come to her. This portfolio wasn’t created in response to a specific job posting—it was crafted with great attention to detail to speak directly to the company, itself, and offer her services wherever they could be of use. It shows dedication to, and in-depth knowledge of, the company and its mission. Nina includes information on Airbnb’s past and present that assert her as a well-informed and educated consumer of their services. She isn’t just looking for a job, she’s looking for a career with a company she’s passionate about—so much so that she can form a solid business plan specifically for them, complete with potential partnership opportunities, stats on travel and tourism habits in the Middle East that Airbnb can capitalize on, and market challenges and opportunities in that region. It focuses on the company’s specific needs and how she can fulfill them. Resumes are often extremely one-sided, providing an array of information on the candidate and their skills without directly linking that person’s abilities to the company’s needs. This application gives the traditional resume format a one-eighty by focusing first on potential opportunities for Airbnb, then exploring how Nina’s particular skills, experience, and background can help make them possible. Furthermore, it’s identifying an entirely new need the company isn’t yet focusing on, therefore carving out a path that isn’t already cluttered with competition. It features a call to action. Nina4Airbnb features contact information up front— her email, Twitter, LinkedIn, and blog—then follows up the report with a contact field hiring managers can fill out if they want to reach her. “I want to work at Airbnb,” the profile atop her report reads. “I realize thousands of other very talented people do as well, so to show the kind of value I’d bring to the team, I’ve decided to be proactive and have analyzed the global tourism market to give you my two cents on where Airbnb should focus next. Please scroll through the report, and get in touch when you’re done!” This short-but-sweet summary of her goal, followed up by contact information for the employer’s next move, is an excellent strategy for sparking interest and engagement. While Nina has in fact landed an interview, a glance at her Twitter shows no updates as of yet on the status of her application. Many are anxiously awaiting to learn if she’s been hired; in the meantime, take a look at our tips for making blogs and social media work for you in our social media series.
29 April 2015
As part of our dd:TALENT partnership with Digital DUMBO, The Execu|Search Group was a supporting sponsor of their event, Generation Connect. At the event, digital professionals from across New York City gathered at the Samsung Galaxy Studio for a showcase of media experiences and apps from Narrative_, Fake Love, and RCA Records. After the presentations, attendees had the opportunity to check out Samsung Galaxy products, network with like-minded professionals, and learn how dd: TALENT can help meet their hiring or job searching needs. As one of the fastest growing digital organizations in the world, Digital DUMBO produces live events, conferences, content, and custom experiences that connect companies and brands with digital tastemakers, talent, and executives. Digital DUMBO was founded in 2009 as a local, monthly gathering and today, is a global platform and initiative with over 16,000 members. The Execu|Search Group has partnered with Digital DUMBO to launch their new initiative dd: TALENT – a program that aims to connect talent from both in and outside of the Digital DUMBO community with some of the best companies in the area.
27 April 2015
On Wednesday, April 22nd, TalentCulture—a website dedicated to discussions surrounding the changing workplace landscape—hosted their weekly #TChat on Twitter. This week’s #TChat topic was “How To Turn Horrible Bosses Into Happier Relationships” and focused on three questions: What are common signs of a horrible boss? How do you reduce negativity and create mutually beneficial results with your boss? What can be done to improve corporate culture? The Execu|Search Group participated in the chat, and was featured by TalentCulture in their recap of the chat for our response to question number 3: #TChat A3: Put a greater focus on succession planning, grooming employees for longevity and success: http://t.co/ajTzTRaf8r — Execu|Search Group (@ExecuSearch) April 22, 2015 Succession planning is not only a great solution to any company experiencing problems with their culture, it’s also a fantastic way to close the skills gaps in various industries. In fact, according to the data collected for our 2015 Regional Hiring Outlook, an overwhelming amount of employers (63%) are claiming they can’t find the right candidates for their positions. With the skills gap making it so hard to find candidates, employers are learning that they have to dedicate more resources to training and retention, although respondents to our survey cited providing upward mobility as the #1 greatest challenge toward employee retention. This is where succession planning comes in—succession planning aids employee growth and cultural innovation through initiatives such as continuous training, creating clear roles with defined career progressions, and preparing for employee retirement by grooming trained professionals to take on their positions. Although over half of employers responded that their greatest challenge toward employee retention is providing upward mobility, they still seem to be recognizing the need for this kind of foresight when hiring and training their staff: according to their responses, 65% planned to put greater emphasis on employee training and retention efforts and 60% planned to increase compensation this year. Though succession planning is still a work-in-progress for many companies, it’s important to have conversations about these topics in order to educate and motivate influencers across industries. For a sneak peek of next week’s #TChat topic, “Why Internal Customer Service Is So Important,” see TalentCulture’s preview, here.
24 April 2015
Throughout your job search, one of the best ways to show you’re the best fit for the position is to highlight how well your technical/soft skills will positively impact the business. While these are great ways to stand out, some professionals unfortunately feel the need to fabricate certain areas of their professional history (i.e., program skills, previous responsibilities, salary, etc.) to enhance their odds of landing the role. However, while it might seem advantageous to embellish parts of your resume or salary history, job seekers should always put their best foot forward by telling the truth to any recruiting professional or hiring manager supporting their job search. Elisa Dammacco, Managing Director of The Execu|Search Group’s Accounting/Finance division, encourages all candidates to stay honest with their recruiter. “Lying is not only an unethical method to getting a job that often works against you in the long run, but it’s also a counterproductive move when working with a recruiter since their ultimate goal is to find you the most suitable position at the best market rate,” says Elisa. Whether you seek higher compensation, a new title, or more responsibility, here are the three areas Elisa recommends you should stray away from being dishonest about to any recruiter or hiring manager. Salary history The topic of compensation is one in which many job seekers find themselves embellishing their previous salary, but it’s important to know that whatever details about salary history are discussed during an interview will be fact checked before the employer can extend a formal offer. “Although it might seem like the perfect opportunity to ‘sell yourself up’ by claiming you made more money than you actually did in a previous role, you jeopardize your chances of landing a major career opportunity and can potentially ruin your reputation over a few hundred dollars,” says Elisa. The risk definitely outweighs the reward in this regard, and as a result, such a lapse in judgement will not only forfeit you the opportunity, but it may also deter other recruiters from working with you. “Lying to your recruiter can also have a trickle-down effect across the industry—in the same way you might ‘know someone that knows someone,’ these types of connections are even more prevalent in such a highly-connected field and can have long-lasting effects on your ability to interview with certain companies,” notes Elisa. To avoid the embarrassment that comes with lying, be as honest as you can with a recruiting professional when discussions about salary arise. If you feel you deserve to make more money, be honest and ask the recruiter for feedback on what they can help you attain. Resume details In such a competitive job market, it can seem like a fool-proof plan to embellish certain areas of your resume in order to ensure you get your foot in the door first. While it might seem like a smart move from your perspective, it will only be seen as deceptive and untrustworthy to both the recruiter and employer when they notice discrepancies. “Try to be as forthcoming as possible about all areas of your resume because embellishing your work history may catch up to you at a later stage in the interview process,” says Elisa. Therefore, you should always speak honestly about your skills and experiences as your recruiter’s unique insight into employment and industry trends will allow them to recommend ways to improve certain areas of your resume and answer certain interview questions without lying to maximize your chances of landing a role. Other personal activities Finally, while compensation and your resume are two areas where you should avoid stretching the truth, the companies you’ve interviewed with, other recruiters you may be working with, and certain personal plans (e.g., planned vacations, etc.) are just as important to be upfront about. For example, if you accepted a new role and within the first two weeks of starting take a vacation you’ve had planned for the past three months, the lack of notice might potentially damage a good working relationship between you and the employer. You should be as honest as you can be about information that could impact your schedule or ability to work, so your recruiter is able to be upfront with the employer about your schedule/start date, and more. Keep in mind, your recruiters are knowledgeable enough to negotiate certain aspects of the job and are often able to help you introduce certain “personal” aspects at the right time, without jeopardizing your odds of getting the position.
24 April 2015
On Wednesday, April 22nd, The Execu|Search Group’s Nonprofit division hosted a lunch & learn entitled “What Millennials Want: Smart Ways for Nonprofits to Attract and Engage Millennials Through Social Media” in our New York City headquarters. The lunch & learn featured several panelists including our very own Chief Marketing Officer Hannah DeGiovanni, in addition to: Café and Laptop Social Media’s Daphne Leblanc Katie LeChase of Co-Communications Columbia University’s Marcia Stepanek ASPCA’s Maria Makara The event was hosted by our Nonprofit division’s Dana Scurlock, Christine Carino, and Samantha Wolf. “Research shows that 75% of millennials regularly like, retweet or share stories in social media,” says Dana. “Millennials may not have as much to give yet, but collectively, their impact can be powerful. Engaging millennials is vital to cultivating a pipeline of support for years to come.” As a result, the lunch took aim at the millennial demographic, focusing on how nonprofit organizations can engage millennials and leverage their unique social media presence to get their mission across to potential donors and volunteers.
23 April 2015
Last week, The Execu|Search Group’s Bridge Travel Healthcare division attended The American Occupational Therapy Association’s Annual Conference & Expo in Nashville, Tennessee. At the event, which was attended by over 7,000 occupational therapy professionals, participants had the opportunity to network with likeminded professionals, attend educational sessions with distinguished speakers, and learn about new career opportunities. During the 5-day conference, The Execu|Search Group had a booth where they were able to reconnect with current candidates and clients as well as forge new relationships with occupational therapy professionals from across the country. “We always look forward to events like these because they give us an excellent opportunity to make more personal connections,” says Daniela D`Alessandro, Director of the Bridge Travel Healthcare division. “Since we work with therapists and clients from across the country, it’s nice to be in one central place where we can all touch base. Education is also an important component of our business, and these events allow us to reach, and potentially help, an audience that we may have not been able to connect with otherwise.”
22 April 2015
As with most other professionals, there may come a time in your career in which you feel you’re at a standstill. Maybe you’re in-between jobs or looking to switch paths, or you simply don’t know where to go next. Maybe you’re a new grad having a hard time finding work. Whatever the case, it never feels good to be standing still when you’d rather be moving. The good news? Even the most minor adjustments can help spark some changes. Here are some ways to spur that job placement or career change you’re looking for: Maintain a work-life balance. It may seem counter-intuitive, but what you do outside work has just as much—if not more—of an effect on your career as your activities on the clock do. To advance in your career, you have to be proactive, responsible, optimistic, and enjoyable to work with, and it’s difficult to put forth that kind of effort when you’re exhausted or unhealthy. It’s for this reason that many successful professionals cite restful personal time, healthy diet, and regular exercise as keys to their success. Explore. Don’t restrict yourself to only one path. If possible, examine other possibilities for the future, such as considering other companies beside your target one or other positions that can grow out of your current title. The more open-minded you are, the less you’ll stand in your own way, and the more likely you are to get moving. Focus. While it’s important to explore, you should still have a goal in mind—a promotion, a career change, or landing a position with a certain firm, to name some examples—and know what you’ll have to do to get there. Still stay open to new possibilities, but pursue your target goal in an organized and focused fashion. Having a game plan and smaller goals to build up to your larger one is a great way to keep yourself working. Be communicative. If you’re currently employed and don’t see any more growth on the horizon, try speaking with your boss about what potential advancement opportunities there are for you and what steps you can take to get to them. If you’re unemployed, being frank with connections—especially interviewers—about your desire to move forward is the best way to display your ambition. Pick up a new skill. Whether you’re currently employed or not, you have access to the tools necessary to sharpen already existing skills and pick up new ones. Currently employed professionals have the opportunities to pick up new tasks at work, participate in extra training (if available), and observe those in positions above them; however, both these professionals and those currently unemployed have access to the internet and the many resources it provides. Attending a webinar or signing up for a continuing education course are two great examples of skill-building you can do in your own time, which will also show initiative and dedication. Stay current in industry news and advancements. Many choose to create and contribute to a blog dedicated to their field or contribute to discussions on LinkedIn; these are both great ways to not only stay up-to-date on the ins and outs of your profession, but to have your voice heard in the community. However you choose to do so, staying involved in your field is crucial whether you’re currently working or not. You never know what you’ll come across and how certain information or leads could help shape your career in the future.
21 April 2015
While there are a variety of certifications that financial professionals can attain to advance their career, for professionals like buy-side traders and sell-side analysts, the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), is perhaps one of the most prestigious and sought after by employers. With a reputation for being one of the hardest certification processes, the CFA is often considered a gold standard in the industry. For example, the CFA Institute estimates that each exam level only has a 40%-65% pass rate – meaning less than 30% of those who begin the process as level one candidates pass the third exam. Therefore, fulfilling the exam process of the charter is a strong testament to your hard work and knowledge, and can certainly help set you apart from competitors who haven’t. However, before you can reap the benefits of becoming a CFA, you first need to pass the exams – something that is nearly impossible to do this without having a set studying strategy in place. With testing time swiftly approaching for all levels, those taking the exam should have already spent a significant portion of the last six months studying. However, now that we’re almost a month out from the first Saturday of June, it’s major crunch time! Whether you are preparing for your first CFA exam, or the third and final level of the test, here are some tips to ensure your last month of studying is a successful one: Read, solve problems, and review: There is a lot of reading to be done for the CFA exam, so focus on the readings when studying. Find what method works best for you—some prefer to solve practice problems as they go along, while others prefer to get through entire sections before putting pen to paper. Whichever way you find most comfortable, for your final month of studying, make sure you schedule routine review days and practice tests as checkpoints to make sure you understand all the material. A great way to do this is to review the Learning Outcome Statements (LOS), or objectives, provided with each section. Make flash cards and carry them with you: Not only does it help to take notes as you go along, but jotting down key points on flash cards and reviewing them on your commute to work or during your lunch break can help you retain vital information throughout the final month of prep. Many financial services professionals juggle an already full schedule with their CFA preparation, so having access to notes without lugging around stacks of information can be helpful. Use your calculator: When working on problems, practice using the calculator you’ll be using for the test. It’s important to know all the functions the device provides in order to be quick and efficient with each set of questions. Although the test is 6 hours long, you want to make use of every minute on every question. Knowing the tools available to you can only help and may reduce stress during the exam. For finance professionals who have yet to complete all three levels of the exam, here are some additional tips to help you prepare for any future exams: Get—and stay—organized: It takes a lot of focus to master the amount of material required for the CFA exams. The best way to make sure you stay on track for all of the sections of material is to plan out which sections you’ll be studying during which weeks, and how many hours per week you plan on dedicating to them. The CFA Institute measured the workload necessary to pass the exam at a total of 250 hours of studying. So register early, get your materials early, and spread the hours out as manageably as possible. Only you know your schedule and what you can work with. Start early, end early: When you map out your study plan, make sure to start your coursework early enough that you can leave an extra month open prior to testing. This will allow you another several weeks to review and refresh your memory on all that you just absorbed. While you should have put aside time to review as you went along, you want to leave plenty of time to go over the material as a whole in order to grasp the big picture as well as the finer points. Sign up for a review course and buy a study packet: There are a number of resources on the internet to aid in acquiring a CFA, but don’t inundate yourself. Purchase your materials (there are several levels of study packets available, ranging from strictly notes to a complete workbook of notes, practice questions, instructions, and a final review) and sign up for one review course. Rely more on your studying than on the review class for preparation, but use the class and materials to go over weak points as you go along. While becoming a CFA might seem like an intimidating process, the more time you devote to exam prep, the more manageable it will be. Remember, once you become certified, all the hard work will be worth it!
21 April 2015
On Tuesday, May 19th, The Execu|Search Group’s Bridge Travel Healthcare division is hosting an information session for therapy and nursing professionals on travel healthcare careers! At the event, attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the benefits of pursuing a career in travel healthcare from The Execu|Search Group’s Marc Malpeli and Robert Palermo as well as hear from seasoned travel professional, Michael Feist, DPT, about his experience working as a travel healthcare professional for many years. “As part of our continuing effort to ensure our candidates have the foundation they need to lead successful careers, we feel it is important to give them the opportunity to learn more about this quickly growing field,” says Robert Palermo, Staffing Manager of The Execu|Search Group’s Bridge Travel Healthcare division, who helped organize the information session. “Whether you are a nursing or therapy professional looking to break into this field, or a more experienced travel professional interested in diversifying your experience and taking your career to the next level, the presentation will have something for everyone.” The travel healthcare information session will be held on Tuesday, May 19th from 6:30pm-8:30pm at The Execu|Search Group’s corporate headquarters, located at: 675 3rd Avenue, 5th floor, New York, NY 10017. The schedule of the event includes: 6:30-7:00: Networking and refreshments 7:00-8:00: An overview of opportunities and benefits of travel healthcare, including guest speaker, Michael Feist 8:00-8:30: A question and answer session, with the opportunity to individually speak with Marc, Robert, and Michael If you are a Registered Nurse or licensed therapist (PT, OT, SLP) interested in attending the information session, please apply by following this link. Space is limited, so please apply by May 5th.