small change: your proactive job search


small change 


Ciarán Fenton

How small changes in your behaviour will have a big impact on how you work, lead or follow

That’s the working title of a book I’m writing, initially as a series of short blogs.

Blog 1 small change: seven principles

Blog 2 small change: your career is a unique business

Blog 3 small change: your soft balance sheet

Blog 4 small change: your D Liability

Blog 5 small change: your timeline

Blog 6 small change: your formative years

Blog 7 small change: your A asset

Blog 8 small change: your career equity

Blog 9 small change: your curriculum vitae

Blog 10 small change: your emotional intelligence

Blog 11 small change: your reputation

Blog 12 small change: you, three years from now

Blog 13 small change: your purpose, strategy & behaviour (PSB)

Blog 14 small change: your soft p&l

Blog 15 small change: your 7 career options

Blog 16 small change: your relationship grid

Blog 17 small change: you are not a human capital asset

Blog 18 small change: your 7-step job search plan

Blog 19 small change: your 3-step interview plan (1)

Blog 20 small change: your 3-step interview plan (2)

Blog 21 small change: your 3-step interview plan (3)

Blog 22 small change: your job search funnel

Blog 23 small change: your reactive job search

Blog 24 small change: your proactive job search

small change

Seven principles

Principle 2

Organisations are more likely to hire you if

  • you’re the least risky
  • not, necessarily, the best


Blog 19  small change: your proactive job search

funnel 2

Your proactive job search refers to job search activities which you originate and control:

  • Researching target organisations that match your criteria
  • Longlisting targets
  • Shor-listing targets
  • Researching main and operating board members and key decision-makers
  • Researching introductions to or direct approaches to target decision-makers
  • Arranging introductions or making direct approaches
  • Arranging meetings
  • Preparing your pitch for meetings
  • Follow-up meetings


Allocate 70% of your energy to your proactive search.

Don’t worry if there are no vacancies.

Your approach may create one and if it doesn’t your meeting may well lead to another introduction.

Remember that you are a professional service firm on legs (PSF on legs). All the art and science of selling professional services apply to you.

You are the McKinsey of yourself.

And McKinsey doesn’t hang around waiting for business. Does it? No.

Then neither should you.


Ciarán Fenton





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