What Does It Mean When A Recruiter Says a Position Pays Executive Compensation? | No BS Job Search Advice Radio

EP 1431 I received a call from a recruiter who told me that the position paid “executive compensation.”  What does that mean?

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The question I received is, "What does it mean when a recruiter says a position pays 'executive compensation?'" Executive compensation. Doesn't that give you an image of a lot of money. ?

Well, what it means is that, number 1, you're probably dealing with a contingency recruiting firm because a retained search firm will tell you the comp without a doubt.

Number 2 is a probably means that the comp is at the low end of the scale and they are trying to influence you by this generic phrase, "executive compensation." After all, what mean doesn't mean? At $750, $1.5 million to $250? What is that number?

So executive compensation is a signal that this is probably a low salary and the recruiter doesn't want to say it for fear that youor jus going to away.

In addition. It seems to me that they are being kin of insulting to you. They see you as a junior person who can be influenced by such BS.

So here's what I would suggest you do any time you hear 1 of these types of phrases whether it's this 1 or another one that is designed to influence you but says nothing. What I want to do is say, "I have to stop you here for a second. First, executive compensation means a lot of things and, to me,it means one thing; to yo it may mean something else. What do you mean by executive compensation? Be specific."

"They are going to pay market scale from this."

"No. please be specific. You may think executive compensation is $125000 and my definition of that is $450000.So what does your client mean by executive compensation? Get the number out from them.

If there are unwilling to share what the number is, your time is about to be wasted so don't bother. Retained firms will do it because they are giving you a lot more disclosure than the contingency firms. So, rather than allowing yourself to be gamed by them, rather than falling prey to the BS, get the specific number from them; it's really that simple.

And if they're not willing to do it, you'll save yourself a lot of time and aggravation.


JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter
JeffAltman, The Big Game Hunter

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, as well as executive job search coaching, job, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 2200 episodes.

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