The Art of Negotiation

Negotiation. Does the word make you feel slightly uncomfortable, or does the thought of being involved in a negotiation stir up feelings of excitement and bring out that competitive streak you try to keep slightly under wraps? Negotiating is a part of everyone’s life, regardless of career path and position. So, in honor of Halloween, I’m going to share some negotiation “tricks” that will hopefully turn into “treats” for you as you go through the process.

Continue reading »

The 2011 Salary Increase Question

Budget time is right around the corner. Senior managers and HR professionals are starting to plan for what their organizations will be doing as we get into the 2011 budgeting cycle. Since raises have been slim the last couple of years, I’ve been asking executives from all industries how they are handling the salary raise question. Our customers shared early forecasts that 2011 raises will be better, but not by all that much. This information was remarkably consistent across most industry sectors and positions from executives to middle management, technical, financial and clerical positions.

Continue reading »

“Attitude of Gratitude”: Treat your Employees Like They are Your Clients

My best friend’s father and I became friends as I got to know him during college and beyond. His go-to phrase was, “Thank you, thank you, thank you.” He always said it in a way that you knew he meant it. He was an amazing man.

In his 30s he ran a major investment corporation on the west coast, and in his 40s he took over the family lumber business in Kansas City, which was the largest in the KC metro area and the only place to go before the dawn of Home Depot. The recession and housing crisis of the 80s killed his business and he lost everything but a little bit of land and real estate he owned.

I often asked this man about his life, what he had seen, and where he had been. He never so much as whispered a word of regret or despair for losing his wealth. He simply thanked the world for the opportunity to be alive and have the relationships he had. I knew him in his 50s and on into his 60s after he had essentially retired and became a humble candle-maker who enjoyed a round of golf and the close friends he made living on Charlotte Street in midtown Kansas City.

The story of his life, which ended much too early, is indeed a story unto itself which included close personal friendships with famous actors, musicians, and politicians. Through it all, his rise to the top, and his fall from riches, he maintained something authentic to him that any leader can employ: an “attitude of gratitude.”

Continue reading »

Leadership Qualities that Our Clients Seek

The Executive Division at Aureus Group does a great deal of work in the retained search arena. We have helped companies fill high-priority executive-level roles within operations, finance, actuarial, lending, engineering, sales, and marketing in the past year. This work has spanned most industries as we have dedicated professionals who have their fingers on the pulse of different market segments including banking, investments, insurance, consumer goods, and manufacturing from sea to shining sea.

When we listen to companies talk about their needs from a leadership perspective, the functional requirements are never the same, but the leadership qualities that they desire are extremely consistent.

Continue reading »

Landing an Interview: Resume Pitfalls to Avoid

For every job opening, several resumes are typically submitted. Only some of them will result in an interview, and ultimately only one will get the job. So, if 50 people apply for a position and 5 get interviews, what about the other 45 applicants? Why didn’t they get a chance to talk to the hiring manager? In a hiring capacity, I see a lot of resumes every day – some stand out as “must calls”, others fall under “maybes”, and many can be easily dismissed. This leaves the question in most applicants’ minds: What can I do to make my resume stand out? I would like to share with you some common resume mistakes to avoid, and some of the things my “must call” resumes have in common.

Continue reading »

Embrace Your Inner Trainer

Training. What does this word mean to you? Are you one of those professionals who gets excited to participate in every training session opportunity that comes your direction, or do you try to avoid it at all costs and fly below the “training radar?”

Let’s think about this for a moment. What constitutes a good training session? Consider all the training sessions you’ve participated in throughout your professional career? What sessions were engaging for you personally? What factors do you believe contributed to that successful training session?

Continue reading »

Are you Ready to Change Jobs?

Many indicators flash when someone is ready to change jobs. Maybe they clean up their resume, start perusing job boards, place a call to their favorite recruiter, or increase the complaint frequency to their friends and family about their professional situation. Sometimes the reasons for evaluating other opportunities are appropriate, but sometimes they aren’t. Sometimes the timing is good, and sometimes it is bad. We have spent a great deal of time as recruiters separating legitimate corporate wounds from those that are not.

Continue reading »