Call on a Hire Power

By: PATRICK WRIGHT – Staff Writer
North County Times – San Diego, CA

September 22, 2006

Mark S. James, CPC said he knows about job hunting because he has been on both sides of the desk. The 51-year-old executive-career coach from Encinitas said he spent 15 years as an executive recruiter, but also spent almost three months looking for work in 1996 after he was laid off by the Bayer Corporation.

James said his own experience with job hunting helps him to coach people on how to succeed in their job search.

“I know the feelings of anxiety, panic and helplessness,” he said. “I look back on that time as one of the most educational times of my life.”

James consults with executives of all ages through his company, Hire Consulting Services. He also coordinates monthly ExecuNet Networking Meetings in San Diego for executives and professionals in career transition. The next meeting is at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 2 at the Tamarack Beach Resort, 3200 Carlsbad Drive in Carlsbad.

The market could see a big increase. James said many companies want to employ workers with executive management experience, but would rather hire them first as consultants. He said companies will turn to consultants to fill the projected 10 million unfilled jobs by 2020, when baby boomers are expected to start retiring en masse.

A successful job-seeker, especially at the executive level, will put more into the search than simply finding ads and sending resumes.

“Many people out of work will leap at the first opportunity to come their way,” he said. “You want to be selective. If you get a job for the paycheck, you could be looking for another job within six months.”

James advises clients to do several things before they even send a resume: Write down eight to 10 of their top professional accomplishments, some for the resume and some to be recalled during a potential interview; memorize three statements clarifying what they want in a job, why they left their last job or are looking for a new job; and what they do for a living right now.

The answers need to be clear, concise and repeated in no more than two minutes. “People want to know if you are a ‘risk’ hire, so you want ‘airtight’ answers,” he said. “You never want to be perceived as someone who rambles.”

In the end, James said his satisfaction comes from giving people the tips they need to get a job.

“It’s about helping people,” he said. “When people find their dream job, I feel great.”

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