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Do Passive Candidates Still Have the Edge?

Executive recruiters are strongly biased toward passive candidates – those they have to seek out and who are already doing a similar job to the one they’re being recruited for. This attitude has always stuck in the craw of unemployed executives and those who work with them (coaches and resume writers) because it seems so shortsighted, so silly, so WRONG.

Maybe that attitude is changing, just a bit. Really interesting piece in Business Week about top execs leaving their jobs to pursue their goal of becoming a CEO, announcing it to friends and colleagues, and quickly landing new jobs.

Why? Perhaps because they were so forthright about their purpose, so clear about the types of opportunities they were seeking, and so unafraid to bear the supposed stigma of being unemployed. As a result, they generated some buzz and were quickly snapped up.

Takeaway for job seekers: Don’t necessarily quit your job, but do be clear about what you’re looking for and communicate such to your network. If people don’t know who you are, what you’re looking for, and how you can help your next employer, they can’t share appropriate ideas, leads, and opportunities.

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