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Broadcast Letter To Recruiters To Senior Human Resources

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126 East 56th St., Apt 1300 | New York, NY 10023
C: 212-555-1212 | H: 212-555-1234 | halsted@example.com

April 29, 20—

Ms. Jane Richardson
Executive Search
324 Wall Street
New York, NY 10036

Dear Ms. Richardson,

I joined USA Microelectronics in 20— when they were primarily a captive semi-conductor research/manufacturing site for IBM companies' consumption. We moved the facility toward a commercially viable entity, and my contribution was to assist in the change of the culture. We accomplished this, in part, by bringing effective participative management practices and Total Quality Management (TQM) into the organization. Within five years, external sales made up 90% of total sales and expenses were reduced 60%. Even with these significant achievements, the facility needed to be dramatically restructured, and it was acquired by National Semiconductor in 20—.

IBM offered me a high-level position as Director of Employee Relations at the New York headquarters, a job which was to encompass labor relations employee relations, staffing, security, and safety. In reality, the position focused only on staffing and was considerably smaller in scope and responsibility than originally described. In addition, IBM HR has positioned itself as a tactical gatekeeper rather than strategic partner, and, for these reasons, I feel uncomfortable in the present position. I believe that an outside search may produce a better fit for my background and geographical preferences.

The following may be helpful in focusing this search:

Desired Position
Senior Human Resources Manager

Desired Duties
a) Human resource management including employment, employee relations, benefits, compensation, and government regulation; b) Member of Senior Management team; c) Provide resources to support or create a participative management style; d) Assist Senior Management to work as a team.

Preferred Industries
High Technology or Medical Products

Geographical Preference
Colorado or western United States

Base salary $200K + with equity and/or bonus potential.

Thank you for reviewing my background, and feel free to contact me if I could satisfy one of your search assignments.

With best regards,

Mark F. Halsted

Author's note: This was a hard-copy letter, not an email, in order to avoid the clutter of the inbox. To understand the importance of this letter, it's helpful to read Mark's full story. It tells what his earlier career had been, and why he lost his job. As a matter of fact, Mark was fired, and this is often very difficult to explain. Half the success of a job search after being terminated is to create a plausible, believable business reason for your departure. It can be fatal to say something like, "My boss and I had a different vision . . . or a different style . . . or a different way of doing things."

Mark and I had to wrestle for several hours, even several days, to come up with a good business reason for his departure. He was dejected and couldn't help feeling he had failed. The truth was, he had been promised a much bigger job. The staffing position was way too small for him. In addition, Mark is more of a strategic partner with senior management than his then-boss allowed. In point of fact, the boss was an autocrat.

Notice how Mark positions the loss in this letter: what he tells the recruiter, what he does not tell the recruiter. This is an extremely good example of explaining one's reason for leaving—after having been fired—in a positive light. Go to Mark's story.

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William S. Frank, M.A.,
25 Reasons I love consulting.
by William S. Frank
  1. Brand. You are your own brand, and you can define it any way you want. For many years, I provided outplacement to the ex-employees of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield service corporation. When departing employees left the company, they didn't request outplacement in their severance package. They said, "I want Bill Frank."
  2. Demand. The world will always be full of terrible problems that need solving.
  3. White Hat. I can be a helper and get paid for it.
  4. Pay. I can be paid to do things I'd gladly do for nothing.
  5. Variety. Every day is different.
  6. Happiness. At this stage of my career, I only work for people I respect and care about. If a client micromanages me or is otherwise no fun, I complete the assignment and replace them.
  7. Talent. I'm using 110% of my talents and stretching myself to the max.
  8. Change. I can change my focus any day I want. If you're a McDonald's franchisee, you don't say, "Hey, I've got this great idea for a meatball sandwich—let's try it out today." In consulting you can adjust your focus hour-by-hour, as long as your clients still understand and appreciate what you do.
  9. Income. No one else would pay me as much as I pay myself.
  10. FUN. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
  11. Retirement. I can write and consult as long as I am physically and mentally capable. Peter Drucker worked into his 90s, and when asked which book was his best, he said: "My next one."
  12. Job Security. Although clients come and go, no one can come into my office and say, "Pack up your stuff . . . You don't work here anymore." In 29 years, I've only had one employer: ME.
  13. Travel. I don't have to travel unless I decide to. I travel if it's both FUN and profitable—or at least FUN.
  14. Commute. I live five minutes from my office, a corner office in an upscale six-story tower. In winter, I leave a heated garage at home and drive to an underground heated garage at work. There's seldom time to hear even one song on the radio.
  15. Vacation. Consulting is more fun than vacation (except on Wailea Beach in Maui).
  16. Friends. I have developed hundreds of close acquaintances and several lifetime friends.
  17. Time. I can work as much or as little as I like: four-hour days or 18-hour days. (Of course, my income will reflect that.)
  18. Employees. I can work with employees, subcontractors, partners, or alone—I've done it all.
  19. Passive Income. I've developed several products that provide "mailbox money." I earn while I'm sleeping.
  20. Ethics. I've never had to violate my values or personal code of ethics. I've never had to lie, purposely deceive or harm others, or promise things I can't deliver. I go to bed with a clear conscience. That doesn't mean there's never any conflict. But the conflict is conducted according to generally accepted business practices.
  21. Virtual. My career is fairly portable. With the Internet, e-mail, cell phone, and FedEx, I can work nationally, even internationally from my office—or anywhere in the world.
  22. Purpose. I make a difference in peoples' lives every day. I see it in their faces, hear it in their voices, and read it in their thank-yous.
  23. Experience. Every painful or joyful life experience makes me a better consultant. So does every person I meet or book I read. Grey hair can be good in consulting.
  24. Structure. I have to work very hard, and the clients expect superb results—but I get to structure my days, weeks, months, and years.
  25. Boss. Most of the time, I love my boss.
As I was posting these letters online, I realized I want to communicate my love for consulting. It's just a great business. The single letters, taken together, may create a picture of enjoyment, but in a burst of creativity I listed some of the reasons consulting is such a good fit for me—and perhaps for you, too. They are not prioritized; this is just how they came out.