Post from Transformation Tom™- Be Clear in What You Want, Including the Level: Chapter from “Displacement Day: When My Job was Looking for a Job”

Posted by tomdowd - March 29, 2016 - News - No Comments

Be clear in what you want








Do you want to be on the frontlines with customers? Do you want
to be a manager? Do you want to be VP of Marketing? Do you
know what level is the lowest point you’re willing to start in a new position
and what future growth potential is available for the jobs you are
seeking? With over twenty years in the financial industry, I knew clearly
that I didn’t want an entry-level position. There is nothing wrong with
entry-level, but it needs to make sense with your background, tenure,
and competencies. Also, not everyone wants to be a manager of people.
Is the career path associated with the job you’re looking into leading to a
management role? You need to be clear in what you want—this includes
the level.

The name of this chapter may seem redundant based on the rest of this
book. To an extent, it is—but there are a number of aspects you need to
be clear on when applying for a new job. If you rely on the assumption
that you and your prospective employer are on the same page, you may
well be disappointed. Within days of first losing my job, for example, I
was offered a position with a local company, but it didn’t match the role
and level I was chasing.

In addition to the type of role you may want, you need to know what
level you want. Being in the banking industry, SVP means different things
to different people, including recruiters and hiring managers. Some companies
hand out the title like it’s candy while others limit it to only the
highest levels. Looking from the outside in, it became obvious that my
former company handed out SVP titles closer to the candy version. Don’t
get me wrong, I was proud of my promotion, but I was also proud of the
many peers who also had the same level and title. One of the changes that
I made on the résumé included removing that title.

As I mentioned, I was proud of my past accomplishment, but ultimately
it didn’t carry much weight on my résumé. Some prospective companies
simply didn’t have any of those types of roles open because they
were few and far between since people in that position typically oversaw
significant operations or employees, for example. I had that title when I
managed many people; I had the same title when I was managing projects
with no direct reports. I had to start speaking the external language of the
companies I was pursuing, not the company I’d just left. That meant extra
diligence in laying out what I wanted. The changes had to occur on my
résumé, my marketing plans, my strategic plans, and in the conversations
I was having. All forms of communication had to be moving in the direction
of my laser-focused desires.

As a previous executive, I was still open to senior manager roles in order
to get in the door, knowing I would put in the effort and attitude to
get to the next level eventually. I needed to put that to paper so that everyone
was on the same page. For example, on one of my marketing plans, I
listed the following as my potential roles and options I was seeking:

Senior Risk Management Leader
VP, Operational Risk Manager, or
Executive SVP, Business Control, or
VP, Business Control Senior Manager

There was no question about what I was looking for and what opportunities
could be presented. That description made it very clear what I
wanted specific to the level of employment I was seeking and the type of
role I was best suited for.


Thomas B. Dowd III’s books available in softcover, eBook, and audiobook (From Fear to Success only):

  • Time Management Manifesto: Expert Strategies to Create an Effective Work/Life Balance
  • Displacement Day: When My Job was Looking for a Job…A Reference Guide to Finding Work
  • The Transformation of a Doubting Thomas: Growing from a Cynic to a Professional in the Corporate World
  • From Fear to Success: A Practical Public-speaking Guide received the Gold Medal at the 2013 Axiom Business Book Awards in Business Reference
  • The Unofficial Guide to Fatherhood

See “Products” for details on  Book and eBook purchase options are also available on Amazon- Please click the link to be re-directed:

Do you know about  Two-to-three minute eLearning programs that can change your life.

When Your Job is to Find a Job—and Yourself

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