Graduate Theory

Gene Rice | On The Journey from Grad to Grown-up

May 24, 2022 James Fricker Episode 31
Graduate Theory
Gene Rice | On The Journey from Grad to Grown-up
Show Notes Transcript

Gene Rice is Chairman Rice-Cohen International, one of the top executive recruiters in the world.

He has recently co-authored a book with his daughter Courtney called “Grad to Grown Up”, sharing 68 tips to Excel in Your Personal and Professional Life.

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https://www.linkedin.com/in/grice113

Grad to Grown-Up
https://www.amazon.com/Grad-Grown-Up-Excel-Personal-Professional/dp/1637581920

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Content
00:00 Gene Rice
00:49 Intro
01:38 Questions Gene asks to ensure a good fit
13:10 Gene on asking for a pay rise
24:47 How Gene would find his passion today
34:17 Becoming a grandmaster of interviewing 
46:40 What parts of the book are underappreciated?
51:21 Gene's advice for Graduates
56:03 Outro

Gene:

There was a survey done recently from the conference board that said 25 to 35 year olds. 48%. Don't have job satisfaction, 55 to 65 year olds. This is an America, 52%. Don't have job satisfaction. That's sad for me that said, you know, shame on the older people for not figuring it out. I want to tell you young adults. Figure it out. Find that thing you love. Don't give up your dreams and figure out how to get a career doing it

James:

Hello and welcome to graduate theory. My guests that I is the chairman of rice Cohen international, and he's one of the top executive recruiters in. And he's recently, co-authored a book with his daughter, Courtney called grad to up where they share 68 tips to Excel in your personal and professional life. Please welcome to the show today, Jean Rice.

Gene:

James, thank you for inviting me. And I look forward to our conversation. My friends.

James:

Thanks, Mike, it's great to have you on all the way from America as well. It's, uh, you know, it's fantastic to have these conversations with people like yourself. Um, I'd love to start the conversation today talking about some of your experiences in executive recruitment and trying to find connected people to jobs and, and all that kind of process. What sort of questions do you ask that person to kind of try and work out where they might best be suited?

Gene:

You know, James, you know, the one thing my firm was an executive retained search firm. So the difference is, is that the clients would come to us and pay us a fee and we'd work exclusively for them. And we got paid, you know, whether we made the placement or not, we really became a consultant to the client. Now, thank God we made most of the placements, but, uh, when we would go out and we would interview. And try to see if it's a good fit there's questions that I would always include in our interview. And I've placed over a thousand C-level executives. My company has placed tens of thousands, right. Uh, but the questions that I would always ask someone upfront, even before I shared information about what my client was looking for, I wanted to make sure it was a good fit. So I would ask them questions like this. I would say, listen, you know, tell me in your own car. When have you been the happiest professionally in what was going on that made you feel that way? Okay. Then I would follow up. The next question would be in your current role, what do you enjoy most about your current. If you were the CEO of your current company, what would you change about the company? What would you change about your role that kind of would give us insight James, in, in, into, you know, is there any pain, is there anything that, that they're unhappy about? And then I would always say to them, listen, if I gave you a magic wand and I said, you can diagram the ideal next position for you. Tell me what you would create, what would the company be doing? What would the culture be like? What would your role be like? And by asking those simple questions and I encourage candidates ask themselves those questions, it gave me a snapshot to see, does this candidate have, uh, other things that made them happiest and the things that they enjoy most can my client. And if they can, then I'm going to go, well, you know, I called you about a specific client of ours that we're doing a retain search. Let me share with you how they could match up with the things you shared with me, you know, and, and James, what I w what I would always encourage people to look. In the 30 years I've been doing executive search. I can tell you there's three things that I've identified that will make for a good, not only a short-term fit between a candidate and a company, but more importantly, a good long-term fit. And I would always encourage people to look for these three things. The first thing I would tell them, even if, as an entry level role to a senior. You should feel by joining this firm that I can come in and I can add value. I can make a contribution, right? You should feel like I can join this farm and I can add something here, but equally as important, if you join a new firm, you should be after a year down the road, be able to look yourself in the mirror and say, By me joining this company, I grown professionally in these ways. There's gotta be, you gotta, you have to contribute, but you also have to grow. And if a young adult needs that, that growing piece, that professional growth is, is, is probably more important. The third and most important thing. And this is where a lot of people go astray, James, especially young adults. And the first two can be there, but if the third is not there and then I'm going to strongly recommend, this is not the right place for you. You should not only respect the person you're reporting to and the people you're going to be working closely with, but you should like them enough personally, that if you had to go out and break bread with them and do a business lunch or a business dinner, it wouldn't be something that you would. The personal relationships are critical. And for a young adult, that immediate supervisor is the most important, because if you go in there and you hate him, or you hate her in a very short period of time, you're going to be unhappy and going to be looking for a new position. So those are the things that I would encourage your audience to look for. And those are the things that have helped me in my executive search career, as well as help people feel like, you know, it it's a good match.

James:

Um, yeah, I think that's a great checklist to go through there for people. And certainly I liked what you said about early, early days being important that the growth aspect of a role. Right. And being able to say that you've learned. You know, a certain amount through, uh, being in that company. I think that's just, especially when you're young, you know, and there's a lot to learn if you're not learning them, you know, something is, something is a little bit wrong, so yeah, certainly you should, you should look out for that.

Gene:

I'll add one other thing to your audience. And this is something that we would do. This is something my firm created. Uh, and you know, it's funny, we've gone on the biggest search firms in the world, the Korn ferry, Spencer Stuart, and Heidrick and struggles. They've come to you. They use my firm and hiring some of their senior staff. And this is something that we've shared with them, but I would encourage your audience that if you're going to go on. Before you go on that interview, you should identify what is it about this company in this positions? That's attracting you? What are the reasons why you're willing to take time to interview with this? You know, sometimes you don't really know much, you know, before the first interview, but you can do your research. You can look online, you can Google the company, you know, you, you can look at their mission statement, you know, what the firm's all about. And then after every interview, I would always encourage candidates to keep, uh, a sheet of paper. We would do this. My search professionals would do that, you know, with our candidates. Tell me the reasons why you're interested in this position. What's attracting you. Okay. After every interview, we would say that those reasons hold true. Did any new reasons surface. We might say to them, what questions or what concerns must you have addressed before you're in a position to make the best decision for you and your family around? Is this the right company for you? Right? So we might even get to a certain point where we might suggest some reasons to them that they didn't mention, because we know it's an advantage, maybe. They have a better pension plan. Maybe their vacation policy is longer. Maybe they have a new product coming out, but at the end of this interviewing process, if they're on three, four or five, They should be 12, 13, 14 reasons why they're interested now, money can be one of them, James, but if money is the only thing that's driving you to, uh, uh, a new job, you shouldn't take that job because as soon as someone else comes along and offers you a little bit more money, you'll be leaving. And you all ended up being a ping pong ball and it's going to affect your career. So I encourage them to identify what are the reasons why you're taking the time to interview. And then at the end, what are the reasons why you want to join this firm in this position?

James:

Yeah, that's cool. I, yeah, I think that's been really beneficial. Like you said. That list of things, reasons why certainly you mentioned one thing there about being a ping pong ball in terms of money and how that can be detrimental to your career. And that's something that, uh, you know, we hear a lot about, uh, I guess as you know, changing roles can be good, you know, from a money perspective, particularly early on, but I'm interested to hear your thoughts on how that can be seen as a negative thing when perhaps you, as you do that. Um, uh,

Gene:

Well, listen, it's, you know, with the COVID what's going on with. Some of the rules have changed, but only in my opinion, in the short term, James, I can't tell you how many clients, when we would take on a retain search under their qualifications would say to us, I don't care who the candidate is. I don't care how strong the candidate is. If they've had more than two jobs in a five-year period, I do not want to integrate. I am not interested now. Why is that? Because they feel the candidate doesn't have any loyalty, the candidates going to leave as soon as someone comes along and offers them more money. So they want people cause in, in every position, no matter how great the company is, no matter how great the onboarding process is, there is a learning curve you have to go through, right. There is, you know, And firms don't want people that the first time there's a challenge, they ended up leaving. They want people that are going to hang in there. Right. So that's, that's why I say that, you know,

James:

Yeah, that's interesting. And so like, do you think that applies, like, does that apply more so to like senior people or does that, like, what would your advice be to someone that is, you know, perhaps in the first few years of their career, should they still avoid, you know, doing things like that?

Gene:

Listen, if they absolutely hate their job, if they hate their manager and they're not growing professionally, then they have to look and they have to leave. But what I encourage them to do, you do not want to just your first job, my strong professional opinion. You got to hang in there for at least two years. All right, you got an alert. Otherwise people think that you're not, you know, that, that you're going to bounce every time there's any kind of difficulty. You have to get your feet, you know, under you and you have to stay there for a period of time. All right. And I think when you make decisions, you should be thinking, is this a place that I can spend the next five years of my career? Because as you move up and as you progress, are looking for that. They're not looking for someone that every two years goes on and takes a different, a different role.

James:

Yeah.

Gene:

And I think, you know, and I think Australia, New Zealand is very similar to the states in that I told you that, you know, I was invited because of, uh, you know, My firm and being recognized, I was invited to be the keynote speaker one year at the, the Australia New Zealand executive search conference in Christchurch, New Zealand. Now I couldn't, I couldn't accept the invitation and it's one of my greatest regrets cause my kids were young, but, uh, you know, I think search is very similar, uh, you know, in Australia, New Zealand and you know, as it is here in north America,

James:

Um, yeah, I, I guess I'm was saying, trying not to leave jobs when it gets hard, or if you've joined a company that perhaps isn't the right fit. It's important that if you are going to move like that checklist of things that you were saying earlier, you know, have at least the 10 things, 10 reasons why this company is, is a good place. And really being sure about, about that is, is really important. Um,

Gene:

Yeah. And James, here's the thing. And you know, and sometimes you can't help making a move, right? Sometimes a company. You know, your company sold, right. Maybe things have changed. And if that happens and you had an, a move had to take place that was out of your control, I encourage when they put their resume or their CV together, that they list a reason why. So people can see that, you know, instead of looking at, okay, you only spent a year here and you only spend two years here. If there's reasons behind it, that back it up, I would put that right on the CV or the.

James:

Yeah, no, that's interesting. That's interesting. Um, what about, uh, I want to ask you too. Negotiating like a salary and perhaps like a pay rise and that kind of thing too. Cause I'm sure you've, you've, um, been involved in situations like that. Do you have any process, um, or recommendations to someone that is going through.

Gene:

Yeah, well, his here's the things I want to first make your audience aware of. Right. It's okay. Upfront, you know, especially if there's a search firm or recruiter involved, James, so let them know what you're looking for. Right. You know, from a compensation perspective. But the thing that I've seen, especially with young adults is they'll get the offer and they automatically accept the. I want you to know that if you've gone through an interviewing process and the company offers you a job, you trying to negotiate that offer is not going to jeopardize them, making you the offer. It will taking away the written offer. Right? So I always recommend that they get the offer in writing. And then I want to tell your audience. That's when that's, when the rules of the games change. Now they're in control. That firm wants them. Right. So it's perfectly okay. If you feel, if you do it professionally to go back and that's one of the chapters in the book grad to grown up, it talks about how to negotiate the offer. Once you get it, it's perfectly okay, James, to go back and say, Hey, I'm really excited, but you have to do it the right way. So you send the email back and say, you know, I am really excited about your company and here's the reasons why I know, I, I know I can really contribute. And here's the reason why. Thank you so much for your offer, but after reviewing it, I was hoping to get a higher base salary. And if there's reasons for that, you say, you know, maybe I have to move, you know what, maybe I'm going to be commuting further or whatever. And if there is no reason to say, maybe because I know some of the other companies I interviewed with talking to me about a higher base salary, but if you can raise the base salary by this amount, I'm prepared to resign and start on such and such a date. Right? So you have to know how to go back and ask and how you go back and ask is you tell them, first of all, why you are attracted to their company, why the reasons why you believe you're going to do a great job for them. And then you ask for what you want. But you tell them you offer them something. But if you're willing to do this, I'm willing to, I'm ready to resign and start on this date. Now. Here's what happens a lot of times they'll come back and try, they'll meet you in the middle. Right? A lot of times they might come back and say, I'm sorry, you know, you're at the top of the range, but at least, you know, you try. And then you can go back again. If they won't increase your base salary, maybe you can ask for things while if you can increase the base salary. Could you possibly, uh, you know, guarantee my bonus? Can you give me a review earlier than you normally would, which would then qualify me for an increase? Could you give me another week's vacation? Right. So you go back and you ask again for other things that might not be based salary related. Right. And, and see what they say. And my experience has been probably 60 to 65% of the time they'll increase the base salary. If they won't increase the base salary, probably 20 to 25% on top of that, they'll guarantee a bonus or they'll do a early review. So they can increase your base salary. And if nothing else, I would say they would give you an extra week vacation, but 95% of the time, my experience has been, if you do it professionally, that you can get more than what the company gave you in the awful lip. And I encourage people to do that. Okay. Does that answer your question?

James:

Yeah. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Cause I think often it's, um, it can be quite scary almost to like, well, never, I think definitely to go back and be like, Uh, you know, I really like it a little bit more or whatever. Cause yeah, you feel like if I say no, then like you could lose your job and all that kind of stuff. So it's

Gene:

James. I want you audience to know they will not retract the offer. That's what they're afraid of. They will not retract the offer. Matter of fact, I'm going to tell you something, they're going to respect you more for negotiating. They're going to respect you now. There's a way of doing. You just don't go back and say, well, I was really hoping for a higher base salary. No, you have to do it professionally. You have to thank them for the offer. You want to tell them why you're so excited about their company. You want to tell them why, you know, you're going to do a great job. Here's the reasons why I know this is a great match. And when you ask for something, you got to give them something in return. If you give it to me, I will resign immediately and start for you on such and such. Okay. That's how you go back professionally. That's how you address that.

James:

Yeah. Cool. Yeah. Those are some really useful tips, I think.

Gene:

Yeah. And you know, he, and he is what I want to tell your audience and you know, this is what I've experienced with people you're already. James in, in, in, in, in my company, I think I told you that the book grad two grown up was based on 25 plus years of me bringing in four college interns every summer, right. For eight weeks. And these were very, very bright, a large majority of the year. You know, students going into their last year of college, right? They competed for this internship against other candidates. So they were, they were bright and they were talented. And my experience is when I would bring them into my company, I felt they're investing eight weeks in my firm. I felt important that I would spend some time with them. So once a week I spent two hours with them and it started off as jeans, life lessons, the things I wish I knew James going into my last year of university. Right. And what came out of it was all of their questions. All of, can you talk about this? Can you talk about this? And I was initially. Amazed how ill-prepared a large majority of the, more to not only start their professional careers with their personal careers and what came out of it is, and I got to tell you, my interns went on to be lawyers, doctors, accountants, engineers, professional athletes. Okay. a lot of them would come back to me years later. And they pursued their, their job or their career based on someone of influence the parent, the grandparents, a teacher saying, you should go into this field, you can make a good living. And how many of them went into it, James? And once they did it hated what they were doing. So they went to school for all these years. And then when they finally did it, they hate. I have two examples of two that went to two of the best law schools in America, NYU and Boston college, these two graduate in the top 25% of their class. They came out and worked for big law firms and a year into it. They hated waking up in the morning and going to what they were doing. So there's two things that I want to encourage your audience. Number one. If there's something I want them to pursue their passions. I think one of the greatest goals in life should be for every human being to find something that they sincerely loved doing James, and then to do it well enough that you can create a career doing it, because if you can do that and if you can find that thing you love and you can make a living doing it. You wake up in the morning, not going to work. You don't wake up in the morning, go into a job. You wake up in the morning going to something you sincerely love my personal experiences. Your health is better. Your personal relationships are better. The glass isn't half full. It can, it can be overflowing and you can have purpose in your life. So I encourage your audience to do that. Now, when they find that thing, they think they're passionate about, well, even if they want to be a lawyer or they want to be an accountant, I encourage. Not to do internships, even if it's free internships. And I'll give you an example. My daughter, who I wrote the book with, she went to one of the best universities here called Lehigh university. She was a double major in English and economics graduated at the top of her class. With a point was a university. If she got a certain grade level, they would pay for her advanced degree. They paid for her advantage. She thought she wanted to be a lawyer based on my experience. I said, Courtney, let's see if we can find a small law firm. We'll tell them you're willing to work for free. That will take you in this summer and expose you to what it is, being a lawyer. And she was able to find James, a small law firm where a partner took her. He exposed her to every part of being a lawyer, the research, the administrative part of it. He took her into the courtroom multiple times. At the end of that summer, she had no interest in being a lawyer anymore. She was doing that because she thought coming out of this prestigious university, this is what she should be doing. Something like this. Her passionate always been being in the classroom teaching. And, but she thought that was under her education. Well, she became a high school English teacher. And when I tell you, she loves waking up and her students love her and maybe she's not making as much money as she might've done as a lawyer, but she's a lot happier and she has purpose in her life. So I encourage your audience to first of all, to follow the dreams. Every great dream begins with. Do not give up your passions, try to find purpose in your life. And I encourage them strongly to do an internship before they graduate from university and say, this is what I'm going to do for the rest of my life. Okay. That's my experience. And let me, let me tell you something. There was a survey done recently from the conference board that said 25 to 35 year olds. 48%. Don't have job satisfaction, 55 to 65 year olds. This is an America, 52%. Don't have job satisfaction. That's sad for me that said, you know, shame on the older people for not figuring it out. I want to tell you young adults. Figure it out. Find that thing you love. Don't give up your dreams and figure out how to get a career doing it. Okay.

James:

Yeah. What do you have you thought about how you would go. If you, if you, as someone that was trying to find that passion, I think that the piece there about interning for free somewhere that you think you might like, and then sort of testing it out is, is a great approach. Is there anything else there that you would say if I was younger, how you would sort of think about trying to find your passion and something that really, really clicked with you?

Gene:

Yeah, I'm going to give you a real life example because I mentor a lot of young adults, James, right? My wife and I started a charity that helps children between the ages of 10 and 18. Who are coming from underserved environments. Uh, but they have a passion, but don't have the money to pursue the passion. We have a charity called the planet seed inspired dream foundation that steps in James. And we will find the young person, uh, the teacher, the mentor, the coach, you know, so it could be, we, you know, guitar, singing lessons, every sport you could imagine, dance, gymnastics, whatever it might be. Uh, and then we'll put them together. Well, another charity had heard about our charity and this charity, um, in, in America is called foster kids. I don't know if you have that in Australia, James, but basically it's it's for kids that their parents either died or their parents gave them up and they live in forced to homes with other families and this and this charity. Would help to force the child get into college. And then if they went to college and they couldn't get their first job, they would reach out to mentors who might be able to give them some guidance. So this charity called me cause they knew me from this other charity and said, we have this great young man graduating from temple university. Uh, would you speak to him? He's having a very, very hard time getting his first job. I said, okay. I scheduled a call with them. The first thing I asked them is what was your major? What did you major in? And he says, sports management, everyone in America wants to go into sports management, but there's no jobs. And, and the few jobs there are James, you usually get them because you know, somebody, a relative, a family friend, it's very, very difficult to break into the sports manager. Industry in America. I don't know how it is in Australia, but it's very difficult here. So I said to him, you know, how passionate are you about, about this? Cause I am extremely passionate. I said, okay, because, you know, I said, what have you done so far? You know? And he goes, well, I've sent my resume out. He was in Philadelphia to the Philadelphia Eagles, the Philadelphia 76 is the Philadelphia. And the Philadelphia flyers. I said, well, what's happened. He goes, no, one's gotten back to me. I'm like, okay, well, let me explain rule. Number one, if they were looking for someone that had absolutely no experience, they're going to reach out to you and the other thousand resumes they got. Right. You're never going to get a job that way. Right. I said, but I'm going to ask you two questions. How passionate are you because I will help you, but we're going to have to go on a journey together. And if we get lucky, you'll probably end up in Des Moines, Iowa working for the lowest level baseball franchise there is. Are you willing to pick up from Philadelphia and move to the Moines, Iowa? He goes, I'll move anywhere. I said, okay, fine. I said, now the second thing, I need you to tell me, plan B. If we go on this journey together, when we strike out, which we might, I want to know what other kinds of job you'll take. What other kind of role would you be interested in? Cause I don't want to start this without having a backup plan. And he said, I would take a sales role. I said, great. There's a lot of different sales jobs that we can do. So here's what we did. And here's what I want your audience to understand. In my executive search career, James, because I was on a number of these top executive recruiters in the world list, I would get every single week between 80 and 120 resumes sent to me. I couldn't even read them. And I couldn't probably add to those hundred resumes. If I could help one person, it probably was a lot because the way the executive retain industry. You specialize in a vertical market, you become the top executive recruiter in this field. My field was management consulting and education technology, ed tech. So if we placed the managing partner, McKinsey, the managing partner at KPMG, the CEO of Mercer consultant, right? If you came from that industry, I could probably. You could be the CEO of the best medical device company in the world. I'm not the right person. I can't, my relationships are not there. However, James, twice a year on average, I would get an email from a young person like yourself and email will go, something like this. I have a passion for the executive search or the human resource industry. I've done some research and I know you're a thought leader in the industry. Would you spend a few minutes with me and give me some guy. Now I would always respond to that type of email. I would always spend time with that young person. And I want you to know senior executives, 99% of them would do the exact same thing. Why for not for no other reason, you'd want someone to help you a family member. Right. I would always do that. So with this young man, the strategy that we follow. Right. As I had him do research and identify every C-level executive within a hundred miles of Philadelphia, I wanted them to start with the major, major franchises, the sixes, the Eagles, a union, then go down to AAA and AA and single way. And I said, once we strike out there, we'll, they'll expand in 300 mile radiuses. And if we get lucky, you'll end up in Des Moines, Iowa, he did the research. He identified the C level executives names and got their emails. I helped him write the email. He sent the email, it calls me back and says the chief marketing officer of the Philadelphia 76 is says, I can spend some time with you on Friday. I said, great. I helped him prepare for that call with the chief marketing officer. I said, when that call is over, I want you to call me now. And after the call, he calls me and I said, how did it go? He goes, I think it went well. He invited me to meet four people on Tuesday and I'm like, wait a second. He's inviting you into meet four people on Tuesday. That means there's a job. He's not going to waste your time. And his staff's time. If there wasn't a job. Well, the end result, I prepared them for the how to conduct those interviews. He ended up getting hired in the corporate sales department of the Philadelphia 76. He's now working for one of the big hockey franchises out in the west coast. So to answer your question, I would tell your audience do not be intimidated, reaching out to a senior person and asking for guidance and asking for him. Be prepared for that call. Come in, come in with questions, ask him, does he have anyone? He knows that he thinks could be looking for someone, share with them. What you're looking for. Ask if you can stay in contact with him, right. If it goes really well and there's a position and he leads you in. You're going to be received very differently within that firm than whether you sent your resume in blind. So that's the first advice I would give. The second advice I would give you is I told you this, I believe one of the other goals in life is every person, you know, in, in, in chess is called a grand master. You know, in, uh, in, in, in science it's called a Nobel priests, a Nobel prize winner. I think one of the goals of every human being should be, should be to become a grand master of interviewing, learn how to interview like a Grandmaster. And why is that so important? Because when you're interviewing for the job, you really want, you're going to be interviewing against four or five other people. The Grandmaster interview, it gets the job. Number one, and number two, he gets paid better. So learn and in the book, grad two grown up, we take them through how to become a Grandmaster interview. It's a goal that I want every young adult. 'cause he, you know, you know, he here in the states, what happens, James is all the kids are coming out of the universities and they go to the career center for advice. And the career centers don't really have hands-on experience. So all preparing the students the same way, how to interview. So when they're interviewing, they're interviewing exactly the same way as every other kid coming out of university. So you, you wanna, you want to separate yourself. You want to become that grand Grandmaster.

James:

Yeah, definitely not those really good story that thanks for sharing. And I said, yeah, it's interesting to hear, um, that, that process and knowing what you were able to achieve. Cause I think, um, it really shows that yeah, like you said, if reaching out is something that we can all do and something that can have really. It can be life-changing if, if, if things go the right way. So yeah, really interesting to hear that story there. Um, like the, the, the Grandmaster of interviewing side of things, what are some things like, what are the key things that could really set you up? Is it like to do with like preparing in a certain way, or is it conducting yourself during the interview? That's that's really important or what I'm interested to hear, what some of the key things

Gene:

let me take you through it, but I'll take you through it, but you know, I'm not going to probably do it justice because. There's five different chapters in the book on each step, each stage. But let me just take you through a James. First of all, you gotta do upfront research. Okay. You have to do your research before the interview, but there's five key points to becoming a Grandmaster. Okay. And I'll, I'll take you through the five key points. And the first thing is, I'm going to ask you a question, James. Let's fast forward 10 years now. You're an executive would accompany and you have a key position that you have to hire. You interview five candidates. And at the end of the new process, there's two candidates that everyone who interviewed you included say, both of these candidates are exceptional. Both of them can do a phenomenal job. They have equal experience. They both want a job. Uh, and, but all you have is one job to offer, but you have two great candidate. What do you think if you were making that decision as the manager, what might make you pick one over the other?

James:

Um, I'd say maybe like, which one do I get along best with? Would, would maybe be the one.

Gene:

Absolutely. All ties will go to the candidate that made the best personal connection with. Okay. And that's the first thing. The first step of air becoming a Grandmaster is being able to establish chemistry and report. With the person you're meeting with now, how do you do that? Hopefully beforehand, you're looking at their LinkedIn profile. You're Googling them. You're getting as much background information as you can. You try to find out where they went to school, right? So will you go in, you have something to talk about? I would always coach the candidates. You don't want to go right into the interview. Try to try to have a connect. Right. And if you can't do any research before, when you go in steel with your eyes, look around the room. If there's a picture with them, with their child playing soccer, if there's a picture of them fishing, your, your, your role and your job is to establish report. All right, nothing else. Talk about the weather. Talk about how long they move with the company, but established chemistry because when the whole interview is over and you're following up with an email to thank them within 24 hours, I'm going to ask you to put that personal connection in the email when you follow up. Right? So that's the first thing to establish chemistry. And before the second step of the five step becoming a Grandmaster, let me ask you a question. When you went to school, much better would you do on a test? If you had the answers to the test before you took the test, you do a lot better. That's that's the second thing. What a lot of people assume James, right? Is they got a job description. They soar online when maybe they're dealing with a recruiter who told them this is what they're looking for. Right. And they assume that's what they're looking for. I want you already inside understand that when they're putting together that job description is different people that are putting different parts of it in place. Right. You know, and then HR or talent acquisition is putting that job description together. They need to understand that everyone they're meeting with in an interview we'll have a little bit different twist or criteria. The direct boss is going to be looking for something very specific. From the HR person, the HR person is going to be looking for something very different from the peer, the senior executive who's interviewing a candidate. They're going to be looking for something different than the direct boss or the HR person. So I encourage people early on after you establish rapport to ask a very simple question and the question goes, something like. I was very interested in coming in and meeting with you today. Uh, and, uh, you know, I know we have a limited amount of time together. Would you mind sharing with me and I've read your job description, but would you mind sharing with me what's most important to you in the background of the candidate that you want to bring in to do this role and shut up and the first two or three things that they say to you? In that person's mind, James, that is the most important things to that person. And your responsibility before that interview is over, is to share with that person, how you match to their criteria. So that's the second, that's the second step and becoming a Grandmaster. And you, you, you have to work on the words. Each person asked that question a little differently, but the second step is you. If you can get the answers to the test before you take the test, try to get the answers to the test. Right now, the third step in every interview, you're going to be asked a series of questions. Okay. could be behavior-based questions and that's a real common way, you know, behavior base. I don't know if you have had any experience with that, but you know, in, in the book read the grownup, it explains exactly what bait behavior based interviewing is the kind of questions to expect. But you're going to be asked a series of questions. You have to understand how to answer them professionally. Right. And we teach them how to do that, but then equally. There's gonna come a time when they're going to say, do you have any questions for me? And this is where a lot of young adults go astray. And I'll give you an example. I had someone asked me if I would help this young man recently, who was, uh, an engineering graduate from one of the top universities. You have Penn state university. He had a great GPA. He, uh, looked like he worked, he walked out of GQ magazine, a very professional appearance, and he had nine interviews and got no office. And if you're coming out of the school, he's coming out of with an engineering degree in his GPA, he should have had four or five of those nine office. So when I was asking him, tell me, take me through the interviews. He was asking what I call, win, lose questions. Okay. When Lou's questions and I want you audience to know. I want every question to be every question that someone has. I want every question answered before they accept or deny a job, but there's a time and place to ask them. So he asked one, one company, uh, do you have any questions for me? He goes, yeah. I noticed your stock price has been declining. Can you tell me what. Listen, that's a question you may want to ask, but we wait until you have the offer. Right? He asked another company. Uh, I did some background and I know that your CEO has some sexual harassment charges against them. Can you tell me why? How is that going? Like people are automatically thinking he's feeling negative about the company. So I go over when, when questions and your audience, I want them to. They can go to the website grad to grown-up G R a D T O grown-up dot com. And they can download for free win-win questions that they should ask in an interview. Right? What are they? And these, and these are very basic kinds of questions, you know, and, but they really make a difference. Okay. So that's, that's the third. That's the third skill and becoming a Grandmaster, ask, answering their questions appropriately, and then being asked, being, being, asking the right questions. And then the fourth, the fourth, the fourth part of it is a lot of people will leave an interview and they think it went great. Right. But they leave the interview and they don't even realize that the person they interviewed with might've had one or two concerns. I want your audience to understand James and everyone who does any type of interviewing will always have some sort of concerns about the candidate they're interviewing. Sometimes the candidate is overqualified. Sometimes the candidates under-qualified, that's an executive search professional. The only time I got concerned is when there was no concerns because the other bikes. So except the fact that they're going to have concerns what's not acceptable is you not having an opportunity to hear that, have that concern verbalized to yourself. And if it's false, overcoming and getting agreement is no longer a concern, but if it's real to minimize it and maximize your strengths. So let me give you an example towards the end of the interview, you want to say something like this. I was really excited about coming in and meeting with. And after spending time with you, I want you to know that my interest has gone up if that's true, and here's why it's gone up also based on what you've shared with me around what you're looking for in the candidates background, I believe I'm a really strong fit and he is, why do you have any concerns that I could add value to the ABC company in this role and shut up. And if they come back and the concern is false. You simply say, I can understand why you might feel that way, but let me share with you why I don't believe that's a concern and then address it and end by saying, does that make you feel better about that concern? Okay. You have to concern is real. Someone said to me, I'm completely bald. I need someone with a full head of hair. Listen, I can not grow anymore here. But what I do have is I have a work ethic. That's second to none. I will be the first one in the office in the morning, the last one to leave. You'll find nobody that will do research on his own. You'll find nobody that will be more loyal to the firm. And you'll find no one that the staff will enjoy working with more than myself. If given the opportunity for this role, I promise you, you'll never regret that decision. You can't change the real concern, but you can go back and talk about. Okay. That's the fourth skill and becoming a grand master and the fifth and final skill. I don't want anyone to spend time on an interview without understanding what the next step is. So we take them through and how to do that professionally. I also want your audience to know this. I believe anyone. If you had taken the time to interview, you have one goal and one goal only. Jane. To get the offer, whether you accept the offer or not, that's your decision, but don't go into an interview without saying, this is my goal. I'm going to do everything in my ability to get the offer on this. It's perfectly okay to turn something down, but I want you to be in the driver's seat, not the company. Okay. And then as a way of following up professionally, there's a way of doing that. And you know, that's all in the book.

James:

No. That's

Gene:

say that addressing

James:

No, absolutely. Thanks so much for that. Yeah. I think, I think, uh, the people listing, certainly getting a copy of the book would be a really good mood because I think there are, uh, you know, you can explore these kinds of topics in a lot more detail. Um, but I have a question for you, Jane. And so you've spoken about the book a lot and lots of people have read it now, but I wonder if there's any, are there any parts of the book that you think are under. Well, people don't speak about it enough, or you wish people were more interested in, is there any parts of the book that, that fits that for you?

Gene:

Yeah, let me just share with you. The book is 68 tips on how to create a professional and personal life that you can be proud of, right? It goes from everything. So. When the agent was, was shopping the book, James, all the publishers wanted me to do the entire book on career and job search. That's not the book I wanted the right. And the re the reason why that's not the book I wanted the right is my 30 years in executive search has taught me one thing. There's no real professional success without personal success. So what the book goes into James is it goes into the first section is life right? Tips on life. There's things about understanding and you know, a foundation, right? It's understanding, you know, what a linchpin is and, and the things you need to do every week to stay healthy mentally and physically, right. It goes into the importance of gratitude. And how do we establish that? Then it goes into job search. Then it goes into career, you know, you getting a job, but how, you know, how you need to show up, right? There's no elevator to success. James, you've got to take the stairs and we talk about that. Right? What does that mean? Taking the stairs, right. The fourth section, right. Is personal finance. How did I go about creating great wealth, great wealth and simple things. Simple things that they. Right on, you know, understanding the stock market, how I invested, what I did and mistakes I made, you know, the things I did. Right. And the last section was the hardest section. It was, it was health and relationships, you know, and, and I'll, and I'll share a couple of things with you because it might give you some, uh, some insight into the book. got an email two weeks ago, the book's been out for one month. I got an email two weeks ago from a young lawyer in New York. And he had just read my book and he said, I, I just finished putting in this 14 hour day and I, I wanted to get a bite to eat. So I went into a restaurant by myself and I was eating, eating by myself. And I looked at the bar and there was an older man at the bar drinking by himself. And I just read your book. And one of the chapters in the book, James is talk to the oldest person in. And the chapter talks about how much knowledge and information a young person can get from a senior person. And the questions that you need to ask to open up that conversation. So you said, you know, I just read your book. So I figured what the heck I finished in. I'm going to go up and have a beer next to this guy and ask him some of your questions. You said two and a half hours. Right. I had one of the best nights of my life. The gentlemen was a retired, he was a senior writer on the Johnny Carson show. And without reading that chapter in your book, I never would have taken it upon myself to sit next to him and ask him some of those questions. Another young man at a Seattle wash. Read the book and he sends me an email. And in the last section, it talks about marriage and how important it is marrying the right person and how you happiness or unhappiness can come from that decision. And he was living with a young lady and she was putting a lot of pressure on him to go take to the next step. And he read the book and read that chapter and said, you know, it gave me what I needed to realize this wasn't the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with, you know? And that's why I wrote the book. If someone can get out of those 68 tips, one thing like that, I don't think I don't care if anything else happens. That to me is why I wrote it. And Courtney, my daughter. You know, what she did is she loves teaching. She was in a public school for eight years. It was a toxic work environment. She loved the classroom, but there everyone was resigning from the department. The boss was a nightmare, right. And after writing the book, it gave her what she needed to go out and interview and get a new job in this great private school that embraces her. That is, she is so. You know, so those are the things that, uh, is some of the stuff that, you know, we didn't talk about. That's in the book that can help people.

James:

Yeah, no, I think that's really cool. And it's great to hear that it covers everything from Korea, but also everything else that you'd sort of want to know as a young person as well, and really generous of you to put it all in one place to table. Uh, I think this, um, Jane, we're coming up to the end of the interview now, and a question that I ask all the guests that I have on this. Is if you could, uh, rewind the clock. If you could go back to the days where you just finished university and you were going out into the world, knowing what you know now and knowing that, you know, all the, all the advice that you've written, um, what are some things that you would do differently or what are some advice that you would give yourself if you were. Back in your shoes, uh, you know, in that situation,

Gene:

You know it, you know, it's, it's, it's funny, James, right? I think that, I don't know if I shared this with you, but you know, my career was very different. I started. Owning rock and roll clubs in New York. Right? I own two rock and roll clubs. It only booked original music and had bands like the Ramones and the stray cats and Joan Jett and Bo Diddley and Richie havens. I left that business because the first one was extremely successful. The second one was. And my wife would only marry me if I got out of that business. But then I went into corporate America and in corporate America, I was with a division of a fortune 100 firm and international fortune 100 from Alcatel, a French company. And in seven years I was promoted five times. I went from a sales rep to a sales manager, to a general manager, to a district manager. My last job was heading up all these coast operations with over a thousand people reporting to me. I left that job. And I was making a heck of a lot of money for one reason. And one reason only I was never home at night, I was traveling a great deal and we had a young family and I was looking to have some work-life balance. I went into executive search James because I'd use search firms myself. I knew I could bring some value to it, but I never knew what I would find. I did it because I could be home at night. Now they went on to be extremely successful, very fast. But what I'm going to tell you, audience, what I would do differently. I found purpose in executive search. So even though when my firm became one of the largest retained search firms in the world, I never stopped leading the searches because I got purpose. Talking to the executives, talking to the clients and putting a good match together. Half of the people that I would place any C-level jobs had to pick up their families from one city and move them to another city for the role. And I felt, and if I'm going to pick this person's family up and move them, I have to make sure that this is a good match. And I found purpose in that. I had passion. I was excited. I woke up in the morning and I couldn't wait to go to work and do what I did. Um, So if I had to go back, I think I would have tried to identify early on where that passion was and that purpose and met. Might've been a little bit more strategic and looking for it. I got very, very lucky and fortunate. So many other people do not. Now it went on. The other thing is, you know, this book that I wrote, every financial reward that comes to me is going to be donated directly to the charity. My wife and I started to play the scene, inspired gene foundation to help more kids pursue their passions. You know? So I'm a big believer. Pursue your passions find purpose in your life. If you, if you can find that and you can make a career, figuring out how to pursue those things, you're going to be healthier. You're going to be happier. You're going to smile more and that's the message I want to leave your already.

James:

Amazing. Well, yeah, thanks so much for sharing that with us, Jean. Thanks so much for sharing your personal journey as well. It's really interesting to hear how you've gotten to where you are. Um, where can people go? Um, following this episode to find out more about yourself, find out more about the book, you know, where's the place. Yeah.

Gene:

You know, first of all, go to LinkedIn, Jean Rice, G E N E rice, R I C. Vice cone international. You can leave me a message. I'll respond. We have a website for the book grad to grown-up G R a D T O grown-up dot com. You can download some free chapters. You can send me an email on the website. The book can be purchased anywhere, Amazon, um, you know, it's got tons of reviews so far, the feedback has been really positive. I feel really good about. Walmart target anywhere.

James:

Thanks for listening to this episode I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. If you want to get my takeaways, the things that I learned from this episode, please go to graduate theory.com/subscribe, where you can get my takeaways and all the information about each episode, straight to your inbox. Thanks so much for listening again today, and we're looking forward to seeing you next week.