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Julie Puckett - Founder and Partner at Blaze Search
Blaze Search is a women-owned, retained executive search firm with a strong global network. Their mission is to match talented executives with purpose-driven organizations that aim to do good for the world. Julie has significant global experience including Europe, Asia, Latin America, North Africa & the Caribbean.
Julie’s Background and The Mission Behind Blaze Search (01:56)
We are hoping to work with companies who have missions and are looking for good people to help them with those missions. A lot of it is about just working with people who we feel are really excited, people who love to meet and hire great talent.
Filling Marketing Roles (03:56)
There’s a sense that getting the right marketer can take your business to the ultimate place you want to be. That’s why it’s extremely important for this person to have a general outlook on growth. What I tried to do over time is help people make the hiring decision more quickly. Are you ready for someone at the CMO level? Are you looking for a person who happens to be a marketer but that would also be a sort of a business partner?
Marketers are especially important for new companies. It should help you figure out what is the image that you want to portray with your company.
Why Marketers Don’t Last In Executive Marketing Jobs (08:07)
There are a few things I hear from both the client and the marketer side. One of them is a very different set of expectations. That could be taken care of on a deeper level with more attention during the interview process and discussions about the role and the expectations.
The Trends in Marketing (11:59)
One of the latest trends surrounded performance marketers. A lot of candidates during job interviews were purely performance-based marketers who didn’t know a lot about the brand side of things. What happened afterward is that a lot of these companies found that they did not have a brand and they were not able to acquire the right people with those performance marketing machines.
It’s a hard balance to have between a performance marketer and a brand marketer.
When building a resume, marketers should always include actionable bullets. Demonstrate what you did. What founders want to see is growth - it makes them feel comfortable that they're bringing someone on board who's seen things work and has seen things not work.
Also, try to keep your resume one to two pages short.
Separating Yourself From the Rest (25:19)
The most important part is the first paragraph. You need to make it easy for recruiters to understand what you have been doing and what makes you different from the rest. The attention span is so short, so even if you have an amazing background it could work against you if you don’t make your resume as simple as possible.
Marketers should also be aware that many people looking at their resumes won’t really understand many abbreviations.
Going Through the Interview Process and Negotiating the Position (01:58)
I usually set up an interview that lasts 45 minutes. It’s enough time to get a bit deeper into what you are doing, why you've done it, and how you've done it. Also to get to know the candidate a little bit better which is extremely important. The small talk is an important part of the interview process because it's when I'm getting to know you from culture-fit perspective.
For candidates, I can recommend to come prepared for the interview and talk about your fit for a specific company. You should know what the company is before the conversation.
What Marketers Can Do To Frame Their Story (05:12)
I think it's important to be really honest and open about what you can do and what you can't do. I’d also leave the conversation about compensation for the second or third interview. In many states, I’m not allowed to ask candidates what their current salary is and before that used to be a standard question because I was actually trained that way.
I rarely see things not work out in the end. When someone truly wants a role and a company truly wants to hire that person, things quite often will work out.
The Next Steps and the Current Interview Process (14:06)
After meeting with me, the candidate will most likely meet with the CEO. If they pass that part, they can expect to meet four to five people on one big interview day. If you’re coming from somewhere else, the company will usually try to have two rounds of interviews with you during the same day.
Many CEOs would want to see how marketers behave in a case study presentation during a working session. The opinion is a bit mixed here - some marketers are fine with doing that while others might see it as a pre-consulting session.
It’s definitely a little bit tough and it’s an investment but it does ultimately give the client and the team a really good sense of how you might operate with them.
Staying Fresh During Long Interview Process (19:25)
It’s really important to do some homework before you go into these meetings.
The best interviews do have that blend of getting to know each other as people and then getting into things that you really want to learn about the company and that they want to learn about you.
Check Linkedin profiles of the people that will be interviewing you and see if you can find something you have in common. If you do find it, definitely mention it during the conversation.