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Introduction to Targeting Goals

Video Transcript:

"I'm Ernie Humphrey, the vice president of educational programs for Proformative, the online community for corporate finance, accounting, treasury, and related professionals.

First, I'd like to welcome everyone to the webinar Target Your Next Job. An effective job search can easily take more than 40 hours a week. You can't afford to waste your time applying for jobs that are not the right fit for your skills or to companies that do not offer you the right cultural fit.

You should have a quality personal marketing campaign engaging the right people at the right companies in the right way to land the right job that you really want.

The main objectives of this webinar are to offer you practical and actionable advice in discovering your best job opportunities, engaging the right people within your targeted companies, and developing an effective personal marketing plan.

A quick note on today's agenda. We will hear a presentation from a long time corporate finance leader and certified career coach, and then we will move to a question and answer segment where we will spend the remainder of our hour.

Let's go ahead and get started by introducing our speaker, Moshe Kravitz. He's a certified Five O'Clock Club Career Coach. Moshe guides his clients in selecting appropriate targets and in marketing themselves effectively. His experience includes many years as an educator, actuarial positions at CNA Insurance and Buck Consultants, and his position as director of FP and A at a major telecommunications energy company.

Everywhere he works, Moshe demonstrates a passion for helping others to improve their skills and efficiency. With this passion he helps job seekers to hone their job search skills, enabling them to land offers more quickly and effectively. With that, I'd like to turn it over to Moshe.

Moshe Kravitz: Good morning. Thank you for coming. As you see on the first slide, our goal today is to target your next job, learn to develop your personal marketing plan.

Let's meet George. George had been the CFO at a major publishing company. He'd been looking for a job for a year, and he had worked with several career coaching organizations before he came to the Five O'Clock Club.

The first question that George was asked when he came to Five O'Clock Club for help was, George, how many interviews have you had with people at a level high enough to be able to hire you? George said none. Okay. The next question to George, how many positions are there in your target? What? Well, George, how many people are there doing what you do? CFO, I'm a CFO, there's only one CFO per company. Okay. How many major publishing firms are there in your area? Seven. So, George, there are seven positions in your target.

George, we'd like you to know that our research has determined that it takes about 200 positions to be able to have a reasonable chance of landing a job. If George is targeting seven positions he'll probably have to live a few lifetimes in order for the odds to work out that one of those positions should open up and be offered to him.

Now, this 200 positions is not really a fixed in stone number. It varies. It varies with a few factors. In a difficult economy a person will have to target more than 200 positions in order to have a reasonable chance of getting an offer. Even if it's a good economy, if a person is looking for a position in a declining industry he'll need to target more than 200 positions. On the other hand, even in difficult economic times if a person is targeting an expanding industry then he can target fewer than 200 positions.

What's so bad about declining industry? Well, since revenues are decreasing, clients are decreasing. Therefore, staff is decreasing, meaning there's not many hiring opportunities nor advancement opportunities, and those people who are still remaining - they lucked out and didn't get laid off - feel tremendous pressure maybe they're next. That causes strained relationships among even the best of working associates.

All the opposite is true by an expanding industry. When you're targeting positions, to the extent possible you'd like to target an expanding industry or at least a stable industry and not a declining industry.

A few examples I can tell you from first hand experience when I worked in pension consulting. Everyone knows that every year there are fewer and fewer defined benefit plans in existence than there were the previous year. Plans are frozen. Companies are merged into another company and the pension plan is merged. People change over to a less expensive defined contribution plan. So, they need fewer actuaries. All the symptoms that we just described are present in the pension consulting industry.

The land line phone service is a declining industry. AT and T, the phone company, now bills itself as a service and entertainment provider, because land line is a declining industry.

Some expanding industries, just a few, medical supplies and pharmaceuticals, even though they may have their ups and downs, generally experience year over year growth. Back when I was in pensions one type of annual analysis we would do would be for the medical retirement benefits that are offered to retirees. We'd have to look back and project forward projected increases in medical costs.

Medical costs always have been increasing for many, many years back and for as far out in the future as we could see in double digits - 12%, 14% year over year. That's an expanding industry.

Now, after recent government regulation, compliance has become a big industry, and risk management. Companies like LinkedIn and Facebook are where you see a lot of growth.

What about George? Let's see if we can help George to expand his number of targets and target maybe close to 200 positions.

What defines the target? First, and obviously, the job function. He's a CFO. If he can expand upon that and perhaps do some related types of activities, maybe George is interested to be a CEO, maybe he can be a controller, VP of finance, et cetera, more job functions means more positions that George will be targeting, increasing the likelihood of getting an offer.

He said he works in major publishing. If he'll expand the definition of his industry or include other industries, that could give him more positions. Maybe he'll work for a smaller publishing firm. Industry could be defined in this regard - not only is the specific product that you're involved with but whether you... Let's say you're targeting a big or a small company for profit, a not for profit non public, et cetera. All these things could be included in the industry criteria for the positions that you're looking for. If George will look for the printing industry or small publishers then he'll have more positions to target.

Finally, the third thing which defines a target, you have your job function, you have the industry, and you have the geography. If he wants to stay exactly where he is and not move, maybe he'll commute a little farther and thereby expand his geography. If he's willing to move, he can expand his geography even farther.

These are the three drivers which define and limit the number of positions that might be available. You move any one of them and you can be targeting more positions."