Thursday, May 16, 2013

How to Find the Most Meaningful Employment

Speed Boat or Ocean Liner?

Just over one year ago, I was simultaneously working with a Fortune 500 client on the East Coast while also working with a smaller technology-driven company in Palo Alto, CA that had just gone public.  Both had highly paid and highly compelling security jobs to be filled.

Then a month or so later another Fortune 500 company came to me with security recruiting needs.  Simultaneously, a company of 200 people that leads the industry with its expertise came to me requiring recruiting assistance.  

Recruiting for large and small companies simultaneously is nothing new for me but what was new was the observations I made by working closely with a variety of different people in a variety of different sized companies simultaneously.

If you’re waiting for me to say that small, nimble companies that operate like a speed boat are better in some way than large, slow moving companies that operate like large ocean-going cargo ships; I’m not going to make that assertion. 

What I Learned About Me

What became very clear to me is that great people exist in large companies and great people exist in small companies.  When you’re looking for a new position, it is your job as a job candidate to determine what kinds of people you want to surround yourself with and then go find a company that contains those kinds of people.

Rather than focusing on large or small companies exclusively, what I discovered is that what matters most to me is whether I’m partnered with people who are responsible, respectful and competent and who operate with high integrity. Anything less than this leads to trouble.

Whether you want to work for a speed boat or an ocean liner doesn't matter.  Both kinds of companies can provide meaningful employment.  Your assignment either way when you’re looking for a job is to find companies that contain the kinds of people you want to associate with and better yet, the kinds of people you want to partner with.

What I'm Doing Today

Today, I'm working with several Fortune 500 companies.  What I learned one year ago is still proving to be true today.  The people I most enjoy working with are responsible, respectful and competent and they operate with high levels of integrity.  

People who are not respectful, who are not responsible, who are not competent and who have low levels of integrity are not the kinds of people I want to associate with anywhere.

How do you go about evaluating prospective employers?  I like to hear about your selection criteria.'s Security Recruiter Blog