May, 21, 2019
Call Us: 253-851-7300
Top 20% Candidates
Current Assignments

How do you stack up?

Please carefully read through the following to be sure you fit the requirements employers typically give us.
Employers hire us on retainer when they need great employees. They come to us when they need people rated among the Top 20% of employees by their current employer.

We call it the 17 sided peg theory. Employers hire us to find 17 sided pegs for 17 sided holes. These employers don´t want 16 or 18 sides, they want 17. When employers are willing to settle for less they use direct mail and Internet advertising techniques. Employers pay retained search firms a lot of money to find the best possible candidate. Since employers are paying us, they have the right to be as picky as they want.

How do you know if you currently qualify in the Top 20%?

Following are some general guidelines. We didn´t create these, but they are the accepted “rules of the game.” If you are going to submit your resume to retained search firms (and most placement companies) you need to understand what employers require from the search firms.

Top 20% candidates typically have:

  • Excellent job stability. Rarely will they have worked for more than 3 employers in the last 10 years.
  • Logical upward career progression.
  • Significant accomplishments demonstrating how they have enhanced the business and profits of their previous employers.
  • Brand Affiliation. Majority of their experience with companies that have major brand franchise affiliations or upscale independent properties.
  • Degree. College/University, culinary, other specialized education resulting in a degree.
  • Excellent supervisory, managerial, and administrative skills and to be able to demonstrate those skills during an interview.
  • Exceptional work references.
  • Willingness to relocate for the right job.

Employers hire people to help them make money, improve guest service, and advance their business (so the employer can grow their company and create more jobs.)

There are many extremely talented people who don´t agree with the above. These people will be best served by working in very small entrepreneurial companies, or starting their own companies, in or out of the hospitality industry. They probably will not be very happy in traditional hospitality companies that are highly structured.

About 3% of candidates meet all 8 of the above traits. 5% of candidates meet 6 or 7 traits. Another 12% meet 5 traits. Other 80% meet 4 or less traits traits. A very few of the 80% are so exceptional or so specialized employers will consider hiring them through search firms.

Stated another way, search firms will be interested if:

-If you currently work in the same city the job is in: You can probably get by meeting 4 of the 8 traits.

-Within about 300 miles of the job? You might get by with 5 of the 8 traits.

-300-1000 miles away? You need to meet minimum of 6 traits.

-Over 1000 miles away? Plan on meeting 7-8 traits.

Know someone in the company? Then your "contact" may be more important than the number traits you meet.

If you meet 4 or more of the above eight traits, you should definitely email your resume to

Be sure to include:

-your current salary, and

-any geographical preferences or restrictions.

If you don't meet at least 4 criteria:

Sometimes things happen to careers that are beyond our control. If that describes you, and you don't currently meet at least 4 of the 8 above please keep us in mind when your career is back on track. In the meantime here are a couple of suggestions to help you.

  1. Create a dynamic resume. (Free samples & tips: Your Career Tips.)
  2. If there are discrepancies or holes in your resume, explain them in the resume. Don´t wait for a potential employer to call so you can explain. (You may be waiting a long, long time for the call.)
  3. Been fired, laid off, or left an employer after a short time? Congratulations! You are in good long as it has only happened once or twice. People who are highly motivated to succeed, sooner or later, get a boss they don´t click with. Explain it in your resume and tell what you learned from the experience.
  4. Aggressively market yourself using the Internet, your former supervisors and your network of peers, and direct mail to employers that you would like to work for.

Aggressively market yourself using This section of our site has jobs from the major niche job boards, employers, Google, etc. It's a one-stop site with over a million US hospitality jobs + jobs from 56 countries. Highlight your accomplishments. Give employers a reason to hire you.

Additionally reach out to your former supervisors and your network of peers. Research employers you would like to work for and contact them directly. Don't wait for them. Don't waste their time (or your own.) Tell them the jobs you are most interested in, salary you need, any geographical restrictions, etc.