Search Smart: Tips for Finding Today’s Opportunities

For many in real estate, there’s a flip side to living through a recession when unemployment reached into the double digits. Those who kept their jobs, forsook raises, shouldered more responsibilities and worked longer hours for their struggling companies are now even more valuable to the workforce than when the downturn began. Necessity made them more productive.

As growth accelerates, human resources professionals and high-value employees alike will need to identify the opportunities offered by a post-recession economy. For example, second-tier managers cross trained in construction, sales, finance and land for homebuilders are now prime candidates for division manager positions. Property managers whose roles expanded from just managing properties to being strategic profit managers now make attractive business development executives. And for real estate owners, the time is ripe for acquisitions and mergers.

For employers …
the recovery means giving managers more independence and going to greater lengths to keep them happy. Their sacrifices, loyalty and risk taking during the recession have earned them the respect of subordinates and supervisors alike. Consider giving more autonomy to people who’ve added skills in recent years as they plugged gaps in shrinking staffs. The same goes for managers whose leadership during the recession kept teams cohesive and inspired in the face of uncertainty.

In severe circumstances, decision making tends to become centralized at the top, even as lower-level managers consolidate responsibilities and supervise more employees. Now is the time to realize their recession experience is an asset and allow them to put their new managerial chops to use in more independent roles. Executives given more opportunities to make their own decisions and who have a bigger stake in the operation are more likely to stay. Those who performed well during the Great Recession will excel in the Great Resurgence!

For employees …
the recovery means that the sacrifice and stress from working for a company that’s lost staff can finally pay off. Reassess the additional tasks added to your workday since the recession began. Look at your areas of responsibility that grew and the challenges that you and your team managed to overcome. Look closely at how your new job description positions you to apply for new opportunities or projects within your current company. Likewise, consider how challenges met during the recession might be valued by another growing firm or use them as leverage in negotiations with your boss.

Hiring is around the corner
Corporate profits rose 36.8 percent last year – the biggest gain in six decades. Eventually the $1.9 trillion in cash that analysts estimate American companies have in the bank will have to be spent on hiring to keep those firms competitive. Now that the Great Resurgence has begun, both employers and their employees can use their knowledge and fortitude gained during the recession to search smart and find the best opportunities.

At Christopher Frederick, we’ve spent more than 20 years helping companies search smart when filling their top positions. To learn more about how we can enhance your next executive search, contact Chris Hingle at

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