Job hunting – the end is close…

Today I met the CEO of job 4. Job 4 is a number 1 ranked (broadly speaking, management) consultancy firm with offices in New York, Asiapac and Europe. I met the CEO today – he’s also the major shareholder.

Job 4 came about in a strange way. The day I was planning on resigning from my last job – which I hated – I’d had an email out of the blue from an ex-colleague who was a senior director I’d worked with some time ago. He’s been at job 4 in a very senior fee earning role for 1.5 years. He has vouched for me very highly with the management team in this place. His email out of the blue was to see if I was interested. The email was quite vague and at first I thought he meant ‘pick my brains’, rather than ‘we have a job going, it’s right up your street and you’d be ideal’. But it was the latter – thankfully – which he meant. Anyway, I met this ex-colleague and his Ops Director last week (I was wearing jeans and trainers at that meeting as I did not look at it as a job interview!)

Today was the second and final stage – meeting the CEO. A likeable, quite quiet man. So, so far removed from those bulldogs at the firm I’ve just come out of (albeit this is a different industry), but even so. He was quiet, restrained. Paternalistic. We got on well. I told him what I’d done at the firm I was at for 5.5 years (during which time I’d reported into the CEO). I told him about the horrors of the job I’ve just come out of and why it was a cultural wasteland.

The vibe here is better than anything else I’ve gone for, including those multinational blue-chips. It’s very relaxed for a professional services firm. It’s because of the type of consultancy they provide. This is the place that I said was like a ‘Saatchi & Saatchi’ office – or how I’d imagine that to be. Funky, trendy, very laid back. Deliberately NON corporate. Flat hierarchy. This firm is the number one in its space. I’ve read articles referencing them on The Telegraph website. They work at FTSE100 level… the salary and perks are as good as (probably better if I look more closely) than all of the other roles I’ve gone for. Their office is in a lovely and very nice part of London, too.

What reticence do I or did I have then? Oh, it’s only small. It’s that the role is brand new (i.e. they’ve been extremely successful WITHOUT having one of me there) and thus it’s not really a team role as such. It would be quite a standalone role. But I’d work closely with all of the people, including the international offices. Compared with all of the other roles I’m considering – this is the most senior. This would stretch me – push me and perhaps empower me to be the best I can be. Something felt very right about the environment – very open, diverse, supportive. Culturally it’s in another stratosphere to what I’ve just come out of. You actually couldn’t get two more diametrically opposed environments. It was so relaxed – and yet high profile but in an understated way. It doesn’t have that horrible ‘wannabe’ desperateness, that horrid overstatedness, which that awful place I’ve recently left had.

The role is great. Genuinely would be what I make of it. Big emphasis on creativity too, and blue sky stuff. This would be poles apart from the much more formulaic role at the mega firm I interviewed at on Monday (and at the place my ex-boss has offered which I’m due to start at on Monday).

To all intents and purposes they have formally offered. The CEO just needs to run it past his number two (out of courtesy) but he basically asked when I could start and said that HR would be in touch either this afternoon or tomorrow morning to finalise the details. The role will initially be a 6 month contract (which is totally fine, especially as this is their first time having someone in this role) and I’m more than happy with that. If both sides are happy it would go permanent.

Very, very exciting times. I’m excited – genuinely – about this role in a way that I couldn’t be about the others because the others were abstract. Unless you are a lawyer, an accountant, a banker – much of professional services is boring to the professional support teams, regardless of how senior you may be. This role is entirely different though, as it’s about people (and no, it’s not a recruitment firm! Been there done that got the t-shirt. This is far better than that). I will do a private blog post with more details when it’s all sorted.

I feel good about things for the first time in a long time.

Oh, in other news – the contract for the job I’d verbally accepted (job 2!) which starts on Monday arrived today… they want that signed, witnessed and sent back asap!!! Of course I’m not doing that. I’ll wait until I’ve had final/final confirmation on this job (4) and then I’ll phone my ex-boss and explain why – 5 days before I’m due to start with him – I won’t be. Hopefully he’ll take it OK. If he doesn’t? Well, that’s not my problem at the end of the day.

13 thoughts on “Job hunting – the end is close…

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  1. Vic – I’ve not had feedback on Monday’s yet. I don’t think it went that well myself. The thing about Monday’s one is that the firm is amazing – huge and very high profile – but the role itself was not ‘dream job’ material. It was in FS. Do I really want to do that, I have to ask myself. The big boss woman I met (who would be my boss) was very dry, too.

  2. That sounds like a good meeting today and in your explaining all the points it seems that you have had a good think about it. I actually think it’s quite exciting that it is a brand new role – gives you a lot of ‘creative license’ so to speak. Good luck – keep us posted!!

  3. Birdie – thanks. There is masses of creative license in the role without a doubt. There is also something to be said for a ‘new role’. I have nobody else’s shoes to fill which is a first! I have really warm feelings about the place and the role. Is hard to describe.

    I probably wouldn’t even have to wear a suit – I could probs be smart casual. That would be SO nice. It’s been so long since I’ve been able to dress down at work.

  4. Lula – thanks, I also have that feeling! πŸ˜› The fact that someone I know and respect has worked there for 1.5 years and vouches for the role and the firm is also very important.

  5. As I’ve said before, if YOU’RE happy with the job, ‘we’ are too. Only you will know that. We can cross our fingers, maybe give bits of advice and hope you make the right decision but it has to be your decision at the end of the day.

    Like Lula said, you really seem so upbeat about this Job4 that it sounds like it’s THE ONE for you. I guess the 6 month contract can work in your favour too as if you find it’s not for you, you have a definite end date !

    Living in London I bet you’ve been a bit concerned being out of work for even a week so I’m glad this all looks like it will be over in a few more days.

    I expect to see many more photos of you with a VERY relaxed smile on your face.

  6. SB – thanks, I do have warm feelings about the role! And the dearly beloved (that includes yourself!) have been a supportive bunch!

    Relaxed smile on my face?! There was me thinking my trademark moody demeanour was there to stay! πŸ˜›

  7. Well this sounds good – – because you sound more excited about it than you EVER did about the last job so clearly your instinct is saying it would be a Good Thing. And I hope it will!

  8. Oh Milo, I’ve lost track. Perhaps a little flow diagram would help me out. However, you sound happy and that’s a good thing; I’m content to be confused and everything works out in the end. La la la…

  9. Daphne – thanks, I definitely am excited about this one and it’s nothing, and I mean NOTHING like the place I’ve just come out of πŸ™‚

    14giants – took a while but finally I was lucky enough to have a few options.

    Urbanvox – thanks!

    Sven – me too our kid!

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