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How To Get Headhunted 2.0

How To Get Headhunted 2.0

It's been almost a decade since I wrote my first guide to getting headhunted.

Fast forward to 2024, and this year is shaping up to be an uncertain one for leaders looking to move their career along, with global elections, recessions, and a continued cost of living crisis contributing to a lack of opportunities and decision-making.

Despite what you might see online, the market has never been tougher, and from the volume of messages in my inbox I know how hard it is for those of you rethinking your career and struggling to get noticed. That's why I'm back with 'How To Get Headhunted 2.0' - an updated list of tips and tricks which I hope will help with your next big break.

Together, we'll look at how you can:

👉 Outsmart the pack and stand out from the crowd

👉 Position yourself so unadvertised vacancies find their way into your inbox

So if you're contemplating your future or find yourself doing a little spring-cleaning over the Bank Holiday break, here's my guide to getting that LinkedIn profile noticed, and ensuring those brilliant opportunities find you.

Remember, this is just the first step on your headhunting journey and the JD&Co team are on hand, as always, to help you navigate it all.

Are you a painkiller or a vitamin? 💊

The most sought-after candidates aren't vitamins, they're painkillers. So what is the one thing that makes you a painkiller?

Think about what you do best, what problems you solve, and what it is that makes you essential, then create an impactful strapline for your profile. Remember, you are not a job title. Don't give away precious space to your current employer.

Stay relevant 📱

Nothing sends a profile to the bottom of the pile quicker than outdated jargon and job titles from the 90s. Are you framing yourself as relevant in the current market?

It sounds simplistic, but you’ve got to have ‘nowness’. There's no point focusing on how well you scale companies in a climate where growth is glacial and funding is non-existent. You need to use fresh words and embrace changes to keep sharp and current.

Keep this section updated regularly. That section on AI might seem horribly outdated by the end of the year.

Nail your elevator pitch 🎺

Summarise who you are: your successes and achievements, what you have delivered, and how you added value. Use personal hashtags and keywords to direct people to your talent and experience. SEO your own profile. Pitch yourself, be clear, and get noticed.

Treat yourself like a brand and don't be shy. This is the place to blow that trumpet.

Create a digital footprint 👣

If you're not active online, you're not being noticed. It's time to play the algorithm.

Comment and participate in groups. Add your expertise to collaborative articles. Show your support and engage with status updates. Interact with someone’s profile before you reach out.

Connect connect connect! Consensus is you shouldn't be sending more than 20-25 connection requests daily, so be strategic with who you're reaching out to.

Speak up 🎤

Networking is more important than ever. Make the most of the benefits that come from in-person communication. Get out and meet your peers in order to progress, learn, and grow. Think about how to get involved with industry events, speaking opportunities, and podcast interviews.

Embrace that photo opportunity 📸

It still shocks me how many senior executives haven't mastered the art of the profile photo. You aren’t being assessed in your ability to perform a job by what you look like, but the right image can send a strong message about your eligibility as a professional candidate.

Remember, no group shots. Update that photo from 10 years ago. Make sure your head and shoulders are facing forward. Smile.

Be available, now 💨

Highlighting your availability for that next project is key; it could springboard you to the front of the queue. It's a fast-paced, high-growth world, and those on the hunt for new talent need it yesterday.

Could you offer that 'short, sharp, shot' of expertise? ⏰

Clients might not be ready to hire their next exec, but instead need a quick, immediate injection of expertise. Keep yourself open to consulting and interim options as you never know where they might lead.

There's a world outside LinkedIn 🌎

Grow your other channels and profiles in tandem with a LinkedIn refresh. Get active on X (Twitter) & Instagram, write the odd Medium article, or create your own Substack to continue building your brand. Most importantly, get out into the world, meet your fellow humans and who could just create your next big opportunity.

Hope this helps and look forward to seeing those new and improved profiles popping up on our feed 😃

Don't forget - if you need a little extra support landing that big role, myself and the JD&Co team will do all we can to help: from general advice to dedicated programmes and courses. We'd love to hear from you! ✨

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