As an accomplished executive, you have long been perceived by your staff and broader organization as a valuable asset. Because of your ability to problem solve and make critical decisions, you are accustomed to being a “go to” person at your company. You’ve earned a powerful reputation and established yourself as a key resource.
Now that you are engaged in an executive job search, you must demonstrate your unique value to prospective employers who aren’t necessarily familiar with your track record. To establish yourself as the ideal candidate, you must position yourself as a “go to” person for their company. They need to see you, not just as an experienced executive, but as a key asset to their organization.
Corporations don’t hire employees, particularly highly paid executives, to fill headcount; they hire solutions to key problems. As you begin to consider your next executive position, clearly define the problem(s) you want to solve. How will your presence help the company generate new market opportunities, reduce operational inefficiencies, address competitive threats, etc.? Take the time to determine what you will specifically bring to their organization.
As you reflect on the problems you are uniquely qualified to solve, follow these steps:
- Define and document key problems you’ve addressed, including what, where, why, when and how they occurred.
- Elaborate on the analysis you performed to determine the root cause of each problem.
- Document your plan to resolve each issue. What specific steps did you take? How did you arrive at that approach?
- How did you monitor the plan to ensure success? Did you need to make adjustments along the way?
- What was the outcome? How did you determine that the issue was resolved?
Once you’ve carefully thought through and documented these examples, you’ll feel much more confident in your value proposition. Use these stories to strengthen your executive resume, boost your LinkedIn profile, and prepare for interviews.
Preparing in advance to answer questions regarding your approach to problem solving will best position you for the executive role you want. Don’t try to think on your feet. With some time and careful reflection, you’ll be able to best illustrate your unique strengths and powerfully differentiate yourself from your competition.