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Executives, Stand Out by Highlighting Your P&L Experience
Provided by BlueSteps.com
Experience managing P&L has become an increasingly desired skill sought by executive recruiters when searching for executive candidates. The ability to successfully decrease costs while increasing revenues is obviously a talent any company would find attractive in a candidate under any conditions, but one that becomes even more crucial in prolonged periods of recession or instability. In times like these, executives who spotlight their background in P&L management--in their resume/CV, online profiles, and networking opportunities--will gain a considerable edge in the eyes of executive recruiters, and at the same time, it just may enhance an executive's chances of securing the deal during a job interview.
If you're an executive who has little experience with P&L management but would like more, or one who would like to better articulate the P&L management skills you do have, then consider these key attributes of executives who maximize control of P&L management:
1. The buck stops here mentality.
Senior-level executives with P&L responsibility must have complete ownership of the business unit’s successes and failures. This includes a strong command of every program and item contributing to profits or expenses, taking final responsibility for any profits or losses achieved. For example, when the CEO of Delta, Gerard Grinstein, gave up stock options offered during Delta’s period of Bankruptcy he displayed personal responsibility for the entire organization’s performance.
2. Confidence and determination that he or she can influence events.
P&L responsibility goes far beyond reporting current finances or being responsible for profits or loss. Executives must take steps to improve P&L statements, and in order for a senior executive to be successful, they must be extremely confident in their ability to work with a variety of departments and teams to identify savings and opportunities. Those who see their organization as tied to market or external forces should not assume P&L responsibility.
3. Team leadership skills – taking the team with you, providing inspiration.
P&L responsibility goes hand in hand with leadership - executives must communicate the actualities of the P&L statement and ensure every employee is invested in positively influencing the financial situation of the organization.
4. Willingness to listen to others and encouragement of creative ideas, regardless of source.
Executives must discover new ways of generating income, especially as traditional income streams are affected by economic downturns or technological advances. In order to implement new income-generating streams, he or she must source new ideas from all levels in the organization and be open to external advisors or consultants. An innovative outlook is essential to maintain a healthy P&L statement.
5. Humility to admit mistakes, sharing of achievements.
Senior-level executives with P&L responsibility are often required to communicate P&L statements to owners, shareholders, and the entire organization, justifying expenditures and explaining profit levels. Mistakes should be openly discussed, followed by suggested next steps and potential solutions. Hiding any information or problems leads to isolation from key thought leaders, and ultimately distrust (and possible dismissal). On the other hand, achievements need to be clearly communicated, attributing success to those involved.
P&L responsibility is highly regarded in executive recruitment.
This is particularly true for P&L experience in multi-million/ billion dollar organizations. Therefore you must be able to communicate in interviews, through your executive resume or CV, and in your professional online profiles exactly how holding this function demonstrates your business and personal attributes. Managing P&L responsibility is a demonstrable extension of your overall leadership skills. Too many executives add P&L experience to their resume/CV without successfully translating this experience into core attributes. When discussing your resume or CV with an executive recruiter or hiring manager, ensure you clearly communicate the importance of P&L experience by using specific examples from your executive career.
BlueSteps is the executive career management service of the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC), putting senior executives on the radar screen of over 8,000 executive search professionals in more than 75 countries. Be visible, and be considered for to the70,000+ executive opportunities handled by AESC member firms every year. Find out more at www.BlueSteps.com.