Skip to main content
Professional Coaching

Tips For Executive Search

By December 30, 2019No Comments

Given the fact that most executive positions are conducted in secret for a wide range of reasons, you must approach your executive search a little differently than you would when you have greater visibility into the opportunities that are available. That requires a level of creativity and tenacity in your pursuits to land where you want to be. 

Here, we share insights from C-Level Executives who have landed the job to Executive Search Firm recruiters, hired to find YOU, the needle in the haystack of unique experience that they need to connect with at precisely the right time.

Introductions | Executive Placement Agent

For a full-time executive placement, there are placement firms that act as your agent and advocate, who are paid by you to uncover opportunities and get you interviews and ultimately placed for top notch opportunities. 
Fees vary, however, a typical structure for an executive placement into a full-time position includes an agreement for you to pay a percentage of your first year salary, say 15 – 25%  (maybe more). In the meantime, you’ll most likely be required to pay a monthly or quarterly retainer, which you can expect to be at least a few thousand dollars a month. That retainer, or a portion of it, is credited toward your “success fee” agreement once you are placed. 
Services do vary by placement firm that you work with, but all should include coaching you through every step of the process. Also, you’ll likely be vetted to ensure that you’re marketable and that there’s good chemistry between you both, which is something you’ll want to assess as well. One that has been utilized by people we know who were extremely happy with their investment is:
AKA Associates – Karen Banks, Executive Coach & Connector cell: 336-339-1209

Introductions | Placement On A Board Of Directors

For those of you who have your eye on getting placed into a paid position on a board of directors, there is one company that we know of who does this, James Drury Partners. They charge a retainer of $200k – $250k and begin with a 3 hour one-on-one consultation to learn about you, your goals and your inflection points of what is going on in your life to help present you with opportunities that are the right fit. They work with you on your behalf, engaging boards to understand their dynamics, need and timing to ensure a good fit for you and the respective board(s) that you’re pursuing. This program is a 12 – 18 month process and there is no guarantee that you’ll be placed, however, they are 95% effective and have placed over 300 executives on paid boards. 
James Drury Partners

Tips From Executive Search Candidates Who Have Landed Their Dream Job

  1. You have to go through the networking stuff, even when you don’t want to. It often feels like a tremendous waste of time, but you never know where it will lead.
  2. Remember that it always takes much longer than you expect the process will take. And then you might get 5 offers in a week after 9 months of searching. Crazy!
  3. Consulting can be good in the interim, but be really careful about payment terms. Even if you have a contract and what you think are solid terms, you could be hung to dry without any payment whatsoever. To avoid this, you might ask to be paid something up front with incremental payments throughout your engagement, versus accepting payment at the end.

Tips From Executive Search Firm Recruiters | Seeking The Right Candidate At The Right Time

  1. Candidates need to keep in mind that the odds are slim and none that I will have the right opportunity for them in my hands at the exact moment they call. We are happy to include them in our database and will search for them, using keywords, when we’re looking for someone with a unique and specialized skillset.
  2. Many Executive Search Firms receive upwards of 200 resumes per day.
  3. If you can get on their distribution list to learn about available opportunities and recommend your friends who could be a good fit, they are more likely to give you the time of day when you ask for a favor in the future. “Give to get” philosophy, starts with giving, sometimes many times before anything comes back your way.

Executive Coaching | Both For Your Job Search And Leadership

Executive Coaching may include some introductions, but it’s mostly focused on helping you choose your path and navigate the process.

Teresa Adams, Executive Career Consulting | You can reach Teresa at 303-578-2403
Sue Kunimune, Kuni Search and Coaching | You can reach Sue at
Ellen Kramer, SolidFire

Would You Like Help Preparing A Personal Branding Tool To Help Show Your Value?

Where To Look For Opportunities

view our list of Executive Search Firms and other places to look for opportunities