Planning and finding your next MD career move can be a challenging and lengthy process.


Whether you are thinking of moving within the Southwest or you are thinking of relocating to this beautiful region – The execution is all in adopting the right strategies to maximise your success.

The Southwest has a vibrant and entrepreneurial business landscape and this is characterised by high growth SME’s as well as larger organisations, the public sector and two of the Top 15 Universities in the UK.

You just have to look at success stories like: Succession Advisory Services; Sponge UK; Riverford Organics; CrowdCube; Nu-Heat; Yeo Valley; Dyson…and there are many many more.

There is a very definite increase of tech firms and successes such as Plymouth Science Park, Exeter Science Park and Bristol and Bath Science Park continue to assist part of this growth.

The future of the Southwest is robust, so here are 7 Success Strategies to optimise your Executive Search:


1. Tap into the Southwest Network

The Southwest is a hive of activity when it comes to events, groups and networking. Here are just a few…

The IOD Southwest is a great source of information and events.

Devon and Cornwall Business Council has over 100 members – mainly C-Suite for all of the larger organisations such as The Met Office, South West Water. They also meet quarterly:

Business Network SW Offers senior decision makers, monthly, lunch time, structured and business focused networking events in Bristol

Solicitors & Accountants – Most of the larger firms run quarterly focused events that attract the senior end of the market.

2. Market Knowledge

It’s a cliche but having good market knowledge is crucially important. Connecting with key people in the region and making introductions is all about timing. Keeping an eye on growing trends, management buyouts, mergers, new businesses start-ups and PE investments will help you build a broad picture. A great place to start is The Southwest Business Insider. With a daily e-newsletter, monthly publication and key business data online – This is a highly recommended source of well-informed business news.

3. Executive Recruiter

Do you always find that you hear about MD appointments afterwards? Enlisting a recommended and well connected Executive Recruiter should arguably be a key part of your search strategy. An Executive Recruiter, should be able to demonstrate a strong knowledge of the market, (especially succession plans) key trends and have a thriving client base.

4. Your Network

With 80% of Executive jobs never getting advertised, engaging a pro-active approach is vital to securing that next strategic career move. Network, Network and…Network. With a whopping 60% of jobs landed via ‘own network’ it really does support the old adage “it’s not what you know…it’s who you know”. Networking can open up opportunities for jobs that aren’t advertised. Staying pro-active by tapping into your offline and online networks is one method that really works. Undeniably, LinkedIn has increasingly become the ‘Professionals’’ networking platform. If you have the golden 500+ connections your personal potential connections are in excess of 30,000.

3 types of people to include in your circle:
The Advocate. Knows you on a personal level. Acts as a trusted sounding board. Likely to be a friend or family member.
The Strategic “In”. Well-connected individual. Demonstrates willingness to make connections on your behalf. Likely a past boss or colleague.
The Subject Matter Expert. Offers superior insight on specific industry. Can give unbiased opinion. Likely a casual friend or family contact.

5. Your Personal Brand

The ‘extinction of the traditional CV / Executive Resume’ is on the horizon and social media sites such as LinkedIn are quickly superseding the humble CV in the career management process. Think of your online profile(s) as your opportunity to promote your own brand. It sounds simple, but everything from your personal profile image, to specific key wording, LinkedIn interactions and network should be revisited at least once every 3 months. Even more frequently if you are actively searching. Whilst they are still relevant, a visual and Human-Voiced Resume should be in an ascetically pleasing format. Visual and interactive CV’s are now rapidly taking over from the previous one-dimensional formats.

Check out these useful sites for achieving a “Visual CV”

6 Answer this question: “What kind of Business Pain do I solve? —

An expensive, irritating kind of Business Pain that they will be willing to spend money to alleviate?” Your Pain-Solving ability is your power in the hiring equation! Make a list of Target Employers who are located within your commuting radius and who might be suffering from “your” flavour of Business Pain. Maybe it’s pain related to losing market share, or pain related to a broken supply chain or cost overruns. Whatever it is, keep your eye on that pain.

7.Don’t apply directly to job postings

This may sound like odd advice coming, and this is not a tactic I would advise for any position other than one in the C-suite. However, the reality is there is a stigma around high-level executives who apply directly to a job advertisement. The thinking at this level of hiring is: If this person is any good, they wouldn’t be looking for a job. Boards, executive search firms and selection agencies seek out leaders in their field who are excelling in their current positions. They want the kind of candidate who doesn’t have to actively search for a new job because they are so in demand, the jobs come looking for them. If you apply to a CEO job posting, the perception could be that you are not one of these high achievers.

King Recruit is a Management & Executive Recruitment proposition based in the Southwest. We pride ourselves on a 98% fill rate on exclusive assignments.

Our Vision: “To enhance the growth of careers and business with strategic recruitment excellence” With proven expertise in Management & Executive Recruitment, Talent Acquisition and Southwest business, our passion is working with strategic, career minded professionals and dynamic businesses.

For confidential enquiries:


T: 01392 790725

Managing Director: Helen on 07808 537696