The jobless rate is hanging high -- for many of the roughly 3,000 political appointees who served President George W. Bush. Finding work has proved a far tougher task than those appointees expected.
"This is not a great time for anyone to be job hunting, including numerous former political appointees," said Carlos M. Gutierrez, Mr. Bush's commerce secretary. Previously chief executive of cereal maker Kellogg Co., he hopes to run a company again because "I have a lot of energy."
Only 25% to 30% of ex-Bush officials seeking full-time jobs have succeeded, estimated Eric Vautour, a Washington recruiter at Russell Reynolds Associates Inc. That "is much, much worse" than when Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton left the White House, he said. At least half those presidents' senior staffers landed employment within a month after the administration ended, Mr. Vautour recalled. […]
Mr. Gutierrez is keeping equally busy during his job hunt. He said he recently signed up for a speakers' bureau and collects $25,000 to $50,000 per lecture about issues such as global business. Last week, United Technologies Corp. named him a director.
Mr. Gutierrez would like to stay in Washington, which he acknowledges could impede his search for a corporate CEO role. "I don't want to go anywhere" because "public policy makes a difference," Mr. Gutierrez explained. He said he may ultimately consider businesses based elsewhere.
Senior Bush aides keen to work again "have to look broader than Washington," said Nels B. Olson, a recruiter for Korn/Ferry International. Mr. Vautour agrees. A number of former officials are now saying, " 'I'll look anywhere' " because they realize the Washington job market "is very tough," he said.
Our p3 condolences to Gutierrez. All things considered, we suggest that he continue to focus his job search efforts inside the Beltway, because--although the news may not have gotten there yet--the job market is much worse out here.
We also offer this item, Number 7 from Lifehacker's Top 10 Tools for Landing a Better Job: Leave without burning any bridges. In other words, do whatever you can to keep from tarnishing your name and reputation at your last job so your next potential employer won't think you're poison.
Unless it's too late for that.
(Props to Atrios).