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Keep Headhunters in Check with These 4 Data Points


Executive recruiters and staffing agencies are often seen as simply an instrument that can accelerate your profession.  Regardless of how successful or how much experience a recruiter has, they can only find you the right job if they know what to bother you with (and what not to).  Offer turn-downs and wasted vacation days can be remedied if everyone is on the same page at the beginning.


By setting the bar with your criteria up front, you can reduce the risk of being blindsided with surprises at the end of the interview process.


Function of the job you want next

A job change only works if it works for you.  No sense in using your paid time off (or losing money if you’re a consultant) if the position isn’t what you want to do.  Explain to your recruiter where you want to take your profession to see if the opportunity has the potential to get you there.  You’ll never find the perfect job and flexibility is recommended however if the job is less than 50% of what you want to do, then you may want to reconsider.

Maximum commute radiusTurning a job down because of location after 3 rounds of interviews might seem crazy, but it happens.  You can ease your decision making by acknowledging what kind of commute you’re willing to tolerate.  Look at a map, know your limits up front and make sure your recruiter understands this.  Be truthful to yourself when it comes to what a job must offer in return for a commute outside your comfort zone.


Target & least acceptable compensation

Offers get turned down all the time because expectations are not met (as a direct result of being afraid to talk about money).  The realism in your salary expectations will determine how successful a recruiter is in finding you the right job, but they need to know what you are thinking.  At what amount would you accept on the spot?  Conversely, under what minimum would you walk away from an offer?  These two data points are critical to avoid surprises down the road.  So again, set expectations with a band between two realistic numbers; what you’re looking for and the least amount you are willing to take.


Wild cards

This pertains to any special variables that would affect your decision making; current vesting, other job offers, travel plans, special work hours.  If the prospective employer is aware of your requirements at the beginning of negotiations, you have a better chance of getting what you need than if you drop surprises after an offer has been made.  Let your recruiter know of any special needs before s/he starts to work on your offer.


If you share your wish list & requirements with headhunters before they send you on an interview, then you can reduce your risk of pursuing the wrong job.

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