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22 Jun, 2013

2013: The Year of the Social Executive – ExecuNet Survey


NORWALK, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 20, 2013 – If you were an executive entering the job market in 2003, your goal might have been to wind up in a recruiter’s résumé database. But in 2013, it’s all about meeting people and making new friends who will get you in the door.

A recent ExecuNet survey reveals that 1-in-4 executives placed into companies by search firms in 2012 were originally identified or contacted through a social network. “Social executives will win even bigger in 2013,” predicts ExecuNet President Mark Anderson, “not just in terms of attracting job offers but building their leadership brands and relationships that can make their executive lives better.”

The report, which surveyed 3,785 executives and nearly 600 recruiters, shows that 60% of all executives believe being visible online to the right people contributes to their professional success.

Forty-five percent of the executives surveyed said niche professional circles are where they make the most valued connections, as opposed to large, popular networks. “Those places are impersonal databases,” warns Anderson. “In a smaller, private network it’s also easier to manage your confidentiality, which executives care about.”

Recruiters are taking notice. The ExecuNet survey shows that companies in the market for talent are spending far less time processing applications of unknown candidates. Instead, they’re active in industry communities, functional area groups and executive networks, seeking to personally connect with or be referred to top performers.

So what do executives who want a piece of the hiring action need to do? “Move in circles of people who do the work you want to do,” advises Anderson. “Share your experiences, so others can get to know you. Build your social capital by becoming known as a source for valuable content. That often leads to opportunities with others in their circles.”

He also recommends having a keyword-rich, online profile that demonstrates not only what you’ve accomplished, but what you can offer future employers. “Recruiters are searching for demonstrations of thought leadership, network connections, online recommendations, press releases, civic and volunteer activities. Presenting a holistic view of yourself as a leader will elevate your candidacy.”