Corporate Board Member
After a 25 year career as a senior audit partner with a big 4 management consulting firm and ten years as an executive vice president of global risk management for a leading international pharmaceutical company, I found myself in a position where I could afford to retire, but I was still too young and driven not to contribute. It was suggested, since I was a CPA and had extensive risk management, IT and Sarbanes-Oxley governance experience, that I might consider a board seat with a public or private equity firm. I researched the Internet, wrote a resume and started mailing colleagues, executive recruiters and even answering on-line job posts and after four months did not even get a bite. I was getting frustrated. During a conversation with a respected headhunter, it was suggested that I contact Executive Advisory. After my first week of working with Executive Advisory, my feeling of frustration began to fade. I was now working with professionals and using a process that had a track record of success. I felt like I was in control of my future again. The hardest part of the process was making the follow-up calls. The strategist and team leader, working with me, provided great support and kept me focused on the positive. After I got through the first dozen calls, I began to feel more comfortable and more skilled and the exercise helped me immensely in preparation for my interviews with boards and their respective committees. During that time, I had a number of interesting conversations with boards, and their respective representatives (law firms, audit and investment banking firms) that expressed an interest. From those conversations, I had twelve follow-up phone interviews and five in-person interviews. I received one offer to join a public company board in the life sciences sector and two additional offers following interviews. I accepted the first offer and decided to decline the other two based on non-compete requirements and potential liabilities. The “Reverse Search Process” that Executive Advisory offers works if you are focused, follow through with every step, and stay with it.
– Darryl C.
Corporate Board Director
I am a corporate attorney and worked as the General Counsel for a few successful brand name technology firms and as the Chief Counsel for a large venture capital firm. I felt I had a lot to offer corporate boards and read that corporations were searching for capable women to bring diversity to their boards. Our chairman was solicited by Executive-Advisory, marketing one of their clients and thought they were very professional and might be a good resource for me to pursue. I work eighty hours a week and had very little time to do the leg work on my own, not that I could. Executive-Advisory developed a strategy for me, wrote my resume, contacted all of the decision makers, on my behalf, and researched collateral information to assist me with interviews. They were very responsive and generated multiple board seat offerings for me. I only accepted one of the offers to see how well I could handle it with all of my other commitments and my time constraints.
– Wendy L.
My first couple of jobs out of college were in finance for private equity, media and banking organizations, then I launched my own consulting practice focusing on technology commercialization for research produced at the top 5 US universities. I have a bachelor’s degree in engineering, a Masters from Stanford University and thought I had a lot to offer companies in the areas of technology transfers and business sustainability. The visibility and interaction would complement my consulting practice, but I had been reluctant to pursue board nominations because I thought they were mostly held by retired, male, CEO’s. Then I ran into a colleague at Columbia, while completing a fellowship, who pointed me to Executive-Advisory where I quickly learned that although my suspicions about retired, male CEO’s populating boards were mostly true, the demographics were changing quickly and over 30% of boards nationally are searching for women. I was amazed how fast Executive-Advisory was able to identify my governance skills and find decision makers to present to me and produce interviews. We generated eleven interviews within 40 days. I accepted one board seat and I am considering a second. This firm knows how to accomplish the task effectively and in a timely manner. They are professional and responsive. I recommend them.
– Alice B.
I was the CFO of an iconic investment-banking and brokerage firm that was nearly decimated during the 9/11 attacks. I was instrumental in spearheading the repair and growth of the company’s global financial infrastructure and won awards for my initiatives during a very challenging period. The company had rewarded its executive team handsomely, so I opted to retire and hopefully fill my free time with consulting jobs and non-for-profit boards. The consulting work never really materialized and the two non-for-profit boards, that I ended up serving on, were highly, politically charged and more frustrating than satisfying, so I set out to look for a private sector board seat. I asked all of my former business friends for connections and I sent resumes to every search firm in the country with a business listing. Although I received a lot of nice letters, there were no interviews. One of the search firms, that I contacted, suggested calling Executive-Advisory. I am glad I did, as they explained why my process was not working and how to get the attention of the people who have the power to nominate me to a board. I had been trying for a year, on my own, with absolutely no results. Executive-Advisory’s efforts produced two board offers in 45 days and I accepted one. The other company was undergoing a financial reinstatement and I didn’t feel comfortable with the CEO. I may enlist them to conduct another search, as the remuneration, from the company from whom I accepted the board nomination, was quite handsome. I plan on resigning from the non-for-profit boards and expanding my for-profit governance activity.
– John C.
Chief Executive Officer
I was the President and Chief Executive Officer of a $3.2 billion, North American publicly traded division of a leading $15 billion global building and construction products company. I worked for over 20 years, starting with this company in Europe and then was sent to the U.S. to lead the North American business. I became a US citizen and my children were rooted in the US. The company asked me to relocate and run a newly created business in Asia. I wanted to stay in the US so I elected to resign and look for another position. I really did not know where to start. A friend of mine referred me to Executive-Advisory and they gave me a plan and explained the dynamics of the executive search market and process. I am glad I did because I thought my education, experience and accomplishments would open doors easily but I found out that it took a lot of research, contact and perseverance to accomplish my goal. I would never have gotten this done on my own. Executive-Advisory did all of the legwork, propped me up when I was discouraged and kept driving the search to completion. I ended up taking a position as CEO of a private-equity owned portfolio company in the process-manufacturing sector. I am excited about the challenge and hoping to take this job into retirement. This group is focused, responsive and very hard working, I would recommend them.
– George B.
Chief Executive Officer
This is the way to manage your career. I need to have these guys do a search every year for me, even if I am not changing jobs, just to do due diligence on my career. I sold a specialty financial services firm to a money center bank and wanted to replicate my job without making an investment. Executive-Advisory helped me penetrate the private equity world and get direct access to the principals. They are a smart and delightful group to deal with and I highly recommend them!
– Robert W.
How do you find a job as President? You can’t call the President and it can be difficult to find the owner, stakeholder or the appropriate board member. I had worked my way to senior executive level positions with well-known food manufacturing companies and then took a position, as the President of a gourmet specialty food manufacturer, where I grew the company threefold only to have the owner sell it.
Although my efforts paid off well for the owner, they did not leave me anywhere near financially secure. I returned to the Midwest, where our children reside, and started contacting recruiters, looking on job boards and calling industry colleagues and friends. Four months later I realized I was spinning my wheels, buying a lot of lunches and having colleagues say, “I’ll make some calls or ask around”, never to hear back. A friend of mine referred me to Executive Advisory. I gave them a call and they explained how recruiters, job boards and friends wouldn’t get me enough decision makers quickly enough to land a job before my severance ran out.
So I hired Executive Advisory and within 4 days I had a new resume and cover note, that was definitely a better presentation than the one I was using, and a target list of companies with which they thought my background would generate leverage. I still had doubts that I could land a job in 45 days and I told them that, every time we talked. I questioned their contact suggestions and just about everything else. The strategist finally said just do what we tell you to do and the rest will take care of itself. He even took over many of the tasks that were my responsibility during the search. I say this because job searching can be so discouraging that it made me doubt myself and take out my fear and anger on him.
They understood and were very patient with me. I actually received offers within 30 days, one to be the president of a private equity portfolio company and one with a Fortune 100 food and consumer products company, which is the one I accepted. I thank Executive Advisory for their patience, their attention to detail throughout the process and producing exactly what they said they would.
– Carl M.
I spent a month uploading my resume to job boards, filling out on-line job applications, sending resumes and cover letters to recruiters and I did not receive one call for an interview. None of them even have phone numbers. I have a house, two kids in college, three cars and I was burning, even being frugal, $15,000 a month. I felt like I was helpless and free falling. I lost my job as the President of a medium size consumer products company, when the parent sold my division to an Indian conglomerate. The strategist who I worked with at Executive-Advisory, had me in direct discussions with the owners and principals of private equity firms within two weeks. It took 56 days until I was gainfully employed and 76 days until I received my first paycheck. I truly believe that if I hadn’t hired this firm I would still be looking for a job. In fact, I may hire them to be a resource for my new firm. Thanks!
– Bill N.
I was the GM of a division of an industrial Fortune 500 company, and although I had a good job, I wanted to take advantage of the tremendous growth in China. I asked Executive-Advisory if they could find American companies with manufacturing operations in China and then, of course, line me up with the hiring authority in the US. I wanted to make sure it was an American company so I could repatriate in the future. They did two searches for me: one to find all of the industrial companies where I could generate leverage in China and the second to find out which ones were owned by American companies. It took 8 weeks and I accepted an offer to be a Division President for a capital equipment manufacturer, just outside of Beijing. The strategist at Executive-Advisory was very knowledgeable and very professional. I recommend them to anyone making an executive job change.
– Tom B.
I found myself looking for a job, beginning in December, hopeful that the job market was improving. The previous two years the job market had been just awful so anything would be better. I forget how I came across Executive Advisory but their methodology was nearly identical to the $10K firm I talked to and for a whole lot less money. Their plan sounded like the right approach but had promise of getting me in front of prospective employers far faster. When I received the list from Executive Advisory, I addressed all the envelopes and stuffed a quarter of them with resumes and cover letters, based on geography. My thought was that if anything came of my first 25 contacts, I could combine interviews into a specific area. After mailing the first 25 or so letters, I waited 4 days before beginning my follow-up calls. On that same day, I mailed out the next 25 for the next geographic area. It took two days to make the first lot of calls. I waited another two days before calling my second batch of contacts. Interestingly, I had three calls from the second batch before I had a chance to call them. All three led to interviews. I had another interview, based on my call, that I was able to combine with another trip. Even more interestingly, of the three calls I received, none had a position but all were considering creating a position. I never got to my final 25 contacts because the activity was too intense from the first three-quarters of the list and I was satisfied with the jobs and geographies that were coming up.
Attitude makes all the difference. I was committed to finding a job using this method and made it into a job in and of itself. I sat down at 8 am to begin making my calls and kept after it until the end of the day. Concurrently, I continued to pound the internet using various job boards. I got to first base with three companies that I chased via the internet. I’m close to third base on one of those. The internet is very frustrating because you send out a lot of resumes and cover letters, but you have to do it. Leave no stone unturned! I also canvassed old recruiters I’ve dealt with in the past, sending them fresh resumes. One turned up a job for which I’m still in the running. I have kept a list of all my business contacts for the past five years with names, addresses, emails and phone numbers, just for the eventuality of needing to look for a job. I used this list for networking, sending out emails asking for their help in keeping my name in mind for anything they might hear about. I have kept in touch with most of them on an every other week basis, just saying ‘Hi’ and updating them with my results. Acquaintances I have run into are all made aware of my situation and also asked to keep their ears open. You cannot contact too many people because you never know who knows who and what. I had two interviews as a result of contacting friends.
What I found to be so powerful with Executive Advisory is that they target the industry and geography I want to be in. They seek out the person in the company to whom I would directly report as a contact, which in 80% of the calls I eventually reached. In most cases, the person was genuinely sympathetic and honest. The economy hasn’t recovered fully and there are a lot of companies out there still reeling, particularly in my industries. Contrary to what Executive Advisory recommended, I left voice mail messages at every opportunity. I had call-backs of “thanks but no thanks” on 20% of the messages I left. I think it’s a matter of them closing the door so you don’t waste your time or theirs.
One last tip: when I had someone on the phone who was even mildly interested or whom I perceived as being someone who would be a valuable networking ally, I would ask them if they were free for lunch in the near future and that I would be in the vicinity and had flexibility in my time. In every case, it led to a meeting, usually without lunch involved. For me to get in a car and drive 6 hours to meet someone didn’t seem like too big of a hurdle if there might be a job or a lead as an outcome. After all, this was my job – to find a job! I have two job offers and two more that I am expecting within a couple of weeks. This qualifies as a great success in my book. The adage it takes one month per ten thousand dollars of salary to find a job is rubbish. It all depends upon the tools you use and the determination you have to find a job. I would recommend Executive Advisory to anyone with that determination.
– Roger Z.
Chief Operations Officer
I was a retired military officer and Director of Congressional & Business Affairs for the US Department of State with extensive experience as an interim CEO and COO for defense technology-manufacturing companies. I took time off to run for Congress and lost. Hence, I needed to find a new job. I found Executive-Advisory on LinkedIn and called to see if they could help. I immediately hit it off with the strategist, who put together a plan to market me to medium size and private equity owned defense contractors. What I liked most about them was they had a process and time table to make sure we met our goal. Not just one person, but a team of four, all singing out of the same hymnbook. I went on 6 interviews and landed a job as a COO of a $100 million manufacturing organization in the Mid Atlantic region. It took me 60 days from the time I called them until my first day at work. I was very satisfied with their quality, timeliness and support and I am hard to please!
– LG Allen B.
Chief Financial Officer
I left one of the largest global fund of funds in a management shake-up and wanted to use the situation to relocate. This group had my resume written, distributed, and through their unique process, generated interviews and a new position offer in the geographical location that I wanted, within 30 days. I would definitely use them again and recommend them to anyone in executive transition.
– Patrick C.
Chief Information Officer
I was the Corporate Vice President of IT and Infrastructure for a $287 billion life insurance company and was laid off as a result of the firms strategic decision to relocate and outsource a large part of its IT operations. I didn’t think I would have much of a problem finding a new position, as I lived in the New York area, and most of the financial services companies are headquartered in this area. I called every headhunter I knew, sent resumes to all of the posted listings and paid a professional to setup a LinkedIn account, populate the site with information about me and create connections to others in my industry. Through all my efforts I did not generate one interview. I as starting to get discouraged and even depressed and then I saw an ad for Executive-Advisory. I never thought I would be paying someone to help me find a job but the fact is their fee was half of one of my week’s pay, so I took a chance. This was the best thing I did. I would highly recommend this group. They have a no lose process, that makes sense out of the whole job search nightmare. I have a good job now and stay in touch with the team.
– Clifton A.
Chief Technology Officer
I highly recommend Executive-Advisory. I was the CTO of a division of a Fortune 500 company and got laid off when the division was sold to another company. I had not looked for a job in 15 years. I signed up and in 4 days I had a target list of companies that we were going to attack. Even though these guys knew how to market me and take care of all the technical aspects of the search, the biggest value to me was guiding me through the process and giving me support all along the way. I got a job in 5 weeks. I think they were glad to get rid of me, I hounded them with questions every day and they were always there to answer them, even once on a weekend.
– Tom K.
Vice President of Sales
I lost my job as Vice President of Sales with a national technology firm and signed up for and assistance with a career management firm that turned out to be terrible. I gave them $10K and they did nothing, not even return my phone calls. I called my lawyer, he got most of my money back and said that his neighbor had used a company called Executive-Advisory. They charged less than $10K and were accessible and there for me every step of the way. I even felt like the whole research team was my friend and went through the same emotional ups and downs as I did through my job search. It took me 9 weeks and now I am the VP of Sales for a fast growing bio metrics company. These are highly, hard working and ethical people. I recommend them to everyone I talk to.
– Michelle O.
I just got out of the service, where I spent my last 10 years and obtained the rank of Captain. I developed an expertise in administering wellness programs for military hospitals and non-for-profit service organizations. Upon returning to civilian life, I needed to find employment in the Washington DC area, since my husband was still in the service and finishing his last tour of duty at the Pentagon. I hired Executive-Advisory to help me find a job as I had no idea where to take my skills or even apply for a management position in the civilian market. They were able to isolate my core competencies and match them with organizations that embraced those skills. I have to be honest; I had no idea what half of these firms, that they provided, actually did. I was surprised at how many interviews their process produced. I ended up accepting an offer with a national consulting firm as a manager in their healthcare practice. This is an industry category that I would never have considered but is a perfect fit for my nomadic background. Executive-Advisory, you delivered and I am a happy customer. My husband is anxious for his enlistment to end and get started on his search with you.
– Linda B.
Vice President, Sales and Marketing
Due to a company merger, I was laid off from my position as Vice President, Global Sales & Marketing for a top manufacturer of high performance circuit laminates for RF/microwave high speed digital and chip packaging applications. I was given a generous severance package but had not found a suitable position in nearly a year. An executive recruiter arranged two phone interviews for me but nothing came as a result. I was told not to expect much since the information technology industry had collapsed. Executive Advisory explained to me that recruiters get less than 15% of searches and that over 85% of hires at my level come from networking. Furthermore, since most hires at the executive level are 90% chemistry-based, the only way to generate interviews is to get in direct communication with my potential supervisor. My wife and I were both skeptical when Executive Advisory told us that this approach did not involve targeting specific job openings, but we were anxious to resolve my employment situation. Executive Advisory crafted a resume that clearly illustrated my role and accomplishments as a Senior Sales/Marketing executive and developed a list of 250 target companies in the electronics industry within my geographical and revenue parameters. I reviewed the list and accepted 150 of those companies. Executive Advisory then proceeded to make several calls into each company to ascertain my direct potential supervisor and his or her corresponding contact information. I mailed my resumes to 100 direct contacts and made follow up calls to 75. The president of a Fortune 100 diversified technology company was in the process of writing a job description for a senior executive position in sales and marketing for his Austin, Texas division when he received my cover note and resume. The president was surprised at my serendipitous timing, since even human resources was unaware of the need to fill the position. He invited me for an interview, and nine interviews later, I was made the Vice President, Sales and Marketing for the Austin division.
– Max B.
Senior Vice President Wealth Management
I need to thank Executive-Advisory they helped me get a great job that I really love! I was a senior bank executive with an offshore bank and repatriating to the U.S. We sold our house and gave notice to our respective employers, just weeks before the banking crisis. Since we had already bought a house in the Boston area and my husband had already started his new job, we had to keep my search close to that area. Executive-Advisory helped me find every potential opportunity in the area. I really appreciated their attention to detail, moral support and constant help with all my questions. It took me 60 days and I am now the Senior Vice President of Wealth Management for a leading New England bank.
– Amy P.
Corporate Board Member Financial Services
I retired as a senior, risk executive of a global bank and started a news letter and consultancy directed at financial services company CFO’s. I had not looked for a job in 35 years, so I didn’t have a resume or really any interviewing skills. A mentor of mine suggested that I get a board seat. He suggested that I had the right skills, education and corporate governance experience. I hired EA and it was the best investment I have ever made. I got instant exposure and interviews with boards in my industry and a great following for my news letter and blog. They wrote my resume, gave me interviewing knowledge and got me to decision makers that generated BOD interviews.
– Bob A.
Director of Equity and Derivatives Trading Operations
I was very successful at major foreign banks, where I led trading in a wide spectrum of asset classes, including structured pricing, asset backed securitization and risk assessment and migration. I was stonewalled in my current position and I was looking for something more challenging and rewarding. I found the name of Executive-Advisory in Hedge Fund Alert and gave them a call. They explained how they could get to the decision makers and compress the entire NYC market for me while simultaneously keeping my job search confidential so my current employer did not pick up on it. It took about two months and I was really amazed at how many interviews I got and an offer with a hedge fund, which is what I wanted, that I accepted. This group is very responsive and does what they say they will do.
– Sal B.
Chief Executive of a Family Office
I was a hedge fund portfolio manager and managed every portfolio profitably since starting my career after graduating from the University of Chicago. The problem is, I ended up getting laid off every time the hedge fund, for whom I was working, took a material loss. These losses were never attributed to me, but the firm just had to downsize, consolidate or transform investment venues. I wanted to continue my career as an investment analyst in a less volatile organization. I found the Executive-Advisory Group and explained my situation. They had some good ideas and one of them was to look at running a family office, which is the route we took. Family offices are really under the radar and although there are quite a few of them, they are hard to find and even harder to figure out what their respective investment criteria are. I needed equities and derivatives and not real estate and private equity. This group was really good at finding them and the respective decision makers. I don’t know how they get this information, but it got me a new position with an East coast family office, as a Managing Director and more control over my destiny.
– Iggy N.
Corporate Board Member
I have an extensive background in IT, ecommerce and media and I had read in an industry journal that boards have taken notice of the rapid pace of change and have acknowledged the importance of augmenting their ranks with executives at the forefront of these technology advancements, especially as companies increase their investments in digital technologies, social media and mobile platforms. I found Executive Advisory Group and they corroborated that there was a 20% increase in what is being called “Digital Directors.” They developed a strategy to present my background to boards, where technology is integral to respective company’s operations and customer engagement. It took a little work, but within a few months I was nominated to the board of a mid-size, specialty retail company that was forced to incorporate ecommerce functions to their customer base. The average age of their board was 60 years old and as such were not well-versed in digital technology. I really needed the technical assistance that Executive Advisory offered in defining my governance skills and getting them to the right decision makers. I definitely could not have done that on my own. I am only 35 and the youngest person on their board.
– Brad M.
Healthcare Board Director
I spent 30 years as a pharmaceutical executive and then semi-retired to be a university professor at an Ivy League school. I learned pretty quickly that I missed some of the aspects of industry and because one of my colleagues had used Executive-Advisory Group to find her a board position, she referred me to them. They asked me to keep track of my time for 4 weeks to evaluate whether I could spend the necessary time on a board and still keep up with my teaching obligations. We decided after the four-week trial, that I could afford the time and we started the search, which ended 12 weeks later, with me sitting on the board, as the only women, of a private equity owned life sciences company. It was sort of painful through the process (lots of questions, time lapses in meeting getting back to them and resume changes), but the team working with me were cordial, responsive and very pro-active. I have recommended them to all my friends.
– Stephanie E.
Board Director and Audit Committee Chair
My golfing partner and I retired at the same time and both had houses in the Northeast and Florida so we had a lot of time to reminisce and exchange ideas. One morning my partner canceled our golf game and said he had to fly back to the East Coast for an interview. That sounded odd because we had both just retired 6 months ago. When we got together, he said he hired a firm in Chicago to help him find a board seat and that he was in the final negotiations to be on the board of a public business services company in Connecticut. Not to be outdone, my next call was to Executive-Advisory. What I liked about them is the they were very well organized and did exactly what they said they were going to do, when they said they would do it. That’s getting hard to find in this day and age. It took us about four months, but I got a seat on the board of a public Florida bank holding company, with great bunch of guys. The remuneration is great but to be honest it’s a lot of fun and I would do it for free. I did get a stock grant and it is probable that the holding company could be bought, so I might not have to sell my golf clubs to pay for my grand kids’ college tuition.
– Sandy D.