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Question
Hello Mark

Need your guidance.

Have been recently made aware of a re-org due to acquisition at a company in an industry which I worked in for 25 years and left some 20 years ago.  I am currently 60 years of age and working for the past 8 years in a completely different industry. In researching the new ownership I noticed that one of the company directors is someone whom I previously knew and who had, at one time, approached me for a position.

In the last 10 years I have tried on several occasions  to re-integrate into the industry with no success as there are far and few opportunities.  I have no doubt that age and the disappearance of old contacts have not helped the cause either.

My question to you is since he is an outside director and does not have any  operating responsibilities, would you consider it appropriate for me to forward him my CV directly.  The second question, is how would you approach the cover letter given that I have had no contact with him for 25+ years. By the way, he and the headquarters of the company are 3K miles away. Further, they have not posted any positions so my approach would be to offer myself as a generalist with the ability to perform in various line/management positions.

Thanking you in advance for your reply

Regards

Richard

Answer
Hello Richard,

Thanks for your question.

I see nothing wrong with sending your CV to the director you had contact with years ago.  I would think he would be an effective contact assuming he remembers you.  You might consider calling first… that way you will know for sure if he remembers your exchange previously, and if the chemistry seems to work, you can ask if he would help support you as a candidate and sponsor your CV in the company.  The way I look at it is you have nothing to lose and by calling first, you will know if he will support you as a candidate.  If you just mail your CV you will never know.   You might also ask the director if he could suggest a contact inside the company who will help sponsor your CV… if he suggests an insider, you can be assured he’ll advise that contact of his conversation with you and that the contact should expect to receive your CV.

Regarding the cover letter… you really need to customize that to align your skills and competencies with those valued by the company and ones that the company will recognize as critical to the type of positions you seek.  That may not sound like new advice but few cover letters to a good job of getting that alignment correct.  So give that some very careful thought as you design the content of your cover letter.  And you have a one up on most as you previously worked for the company so probably have a good idea of the skills and competencies that are key to the industry’s  technology and professional positions.

I hope that helps Richard… good luck with this going forward.

Regards,
Mark

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Mark Eichinger

Expertise

Any type of question related to domestic and international Human Resources work. My H.R. passions include Compensation design and systems in competitive markets, Health and Safety in Industrial Environments, Performance Management, Talent Management (Hiring, Selection, Employee Development, Compensation, Creating Space, etc.), Communications, Coaching, Counseling, Leadership, and Management. Questions I cannot answer: I am sure there are questions within these categories that I may not be able to answer but my experience below would suggest those would be few.

Experience

I own International Human Resources Coaching and Consulting, LLC. www.IHRCConline.com. Previously, I successfully held corporate executive and management leadership positions from 1979 to 2007 in two $9B+ multi-national corporations. Positions included: Vice President, Human Resources for the Asia Pacific Region, Eaton Corporation; I was based in Shanghai, China. Prior to that assignment, Vice President, Human Resources International and Operations, Eaton World Headquarters, Cleveland, Ohio with global responsibility for Eaton’s Human Resources practices, international assignee management, and Regional Human Resources Directors in Asia Pacific, Europe, and Central and South America. Specifically, my experience spans work at domestic and international locations at the operating plant, division, business unit, and corporate levels and most business scenarios to include startups, closedowns, restructurings, integrations, and ongoing operations. I am an Eaton Business Excellence Assessment Examiner (Malcolm Baldrige based system). I introduced processes and process mapping into the Human Resources environment. I have extensive experience with and working in domestic and international organization matrix structures. In the Asia Pacific region, my responsibilities included, leading the regions H.R. team and processes, managing the H.R. relationship with the corporation, creating and leading the professional and general manager development programs, China’s university relations program and managing the Asia Pacific key leader’s process. I have coached managers and leaders. I am a professional listener, my style open, direct, and focused on leader accountability and employee engagement. In Summary, my career responsibility included more than 60,000 employees, 60 union and union free operations, and 45 countries. I also lived in Korea for two years while in service with the USA’s armed forces.

Organizations
SCORE – Counselors to Americas Small Business; at various locations I have also belonged to Rotary, Lions, Kiwanis and the Chamber of Commerce. I have served on Boards of medical, community and institutional organizations.

Education/Credentials
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Youngstown State University. MBA work Youngstown State University, and University of Bridgeport. University of Tennessee, Lean Manufacturing Certified. Thunderbird School of Global Management, Management Certified.

Awards and Honors
Corporate level awards for compensation systems, communications campaigns.

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