Executives, this is what recruiters are doing to find talent … like you! Are you showing up where they are looking? While retained search recruiters may be a small part of your target audience, HR execs are another great source of contacts, introductions and company knowledge. Consider lunch with 100 as part of your strategy. Set a lunch, coffee, tea, or cocktail hour with 100 most influential people in your target group and connect over the next year. Just 2 per week.
What are you doing to nurture a relationship with HR execs who will be looking for someone like you? What Information are you providing to them that they would like to hear about? What Invitations are you extending? What introductions are you making to them and for them?

“Any smart executive understands that to find the best talent she has to explore new territory that lies beyond familiar geography. That applies not only to gender, but also to race, religion, background and age.” ~Madeleine M. Kunin

In this new economy, finding great executive talent takes perseverance and skill. Accomplished executives are providing value to their current employers, not advertising their availability. How do companies find great talent when a position opens up?
Here are four under-the-radar methods to finding great executives in the new economy.

Organizations have a great deal of data on their current staff. Using that existing data, generate a profile of the most likely skill sets and backgrounds for your potential new executives. Which professional associations do they frequent or are part of the membership? Are there academic organizations that could partner with the company do identify potential candidates

Talk with your current staff – they can give you a road to follow as the search begins.

Where do your ideal candidates spend their time?Spend time working with the professional groups or local community organizations where the most likely candidates are spending time. Check out upcoming conferences that the talent might be attending. A less formal atmosphere can give company representatives an opportunity to chat with prospective candidates, even if those candidates are not ready to make a move.

Once you know who you’re looking for and where they are hanging out, keep in touch.Keeping in touch could mean paying attention to activity on LinkedIn or Twitter, or occasional emails with updates on the company that are of interest and value.

Most executives know when and what kind of talent they need to continue to make a difference in their organizations. Keep your eyes open as you meet people as part of your daily routine. If someone comes to your attention – either through a job application, through a networking meeting, or as a recommendation, think about your needs in the future, not just in the moment. Could this person fit into the next position you need filled? Don’t wait until the position is officially open – talk to your prospect now.

Finding the perfect executive is a long-term proposition. It’s better to build a relationships over time, starting before you actually need someone. Those relationships bear fruit when your organization is finally ready to hire that new executive.

When searching for talent, companies and recruiters need to look outside the traditional job boards. Talking with current employees and using current data to develop a profile of a successful member of the executive team, spending time with those potential candidates and developing relationships before the need arises is the path to the best talent available.

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