PROOF: Job Seekers Who Did It - David Rice
PROOF is an occasional series that showcases (and celebrates!) people who employed new job search strategies and landed THE job or promotion they wanted. Today, we feature David Rice of Portland, OR. (Story by Emily McIntyre)
When David Rice decided to seek some work-life balance and leave his tech consultancy after eight successful years, he knew that 1) he was going to be a strong asset to his next employer and 2) his resume didn't quite do the job.
"In my opinion, my resume sucked!" he laughed. "I knew I had great qualities and experience, but my lack of degree felt like a negative on my resume, and no matter how many times I rewrote it, it didn't feel right."
After a friend and former JobJenny.com client tipped David to her services, he decided to go all-in and invest in the Whole Enchilada package. A great move, as it turns out.
Just a few months later, David interviewed for and landed his dream job, as the COO for the Home Builder's Association of Metro Portland. More on his job-seeking process in a moment: let's back up and take a look at David's unconventional career.
David described himself as a perpetually "bored student" with high SAT scores and a low GPA in high school. He preferred spending time tinkering in the garage with the Apple IIe he’d inherited from his uncle (a hobby that ultimately led to his founding the tech consultancy) over homework.
Stints at several universities — Western Oregon State, Willamette University, Portland State and Purdue — left him uninspired, so he left the academic world and, eventually, found a home at DeTemple Company, a family-owned construction company based in Portland, Oregon. It was here that David began to realize his core strength: problem-solving.
At DeTemple, he filled a variety of roles (and solved a lot of problems along the way), with primary focus on IT and operations. David climbed his way through the ranks, ultimately serving as the company’s president and COO.
It was a fantastic run but in 2010, after 17 years with the company, David was ready to move on.
With young children at home and an itch to try something new, David decided to launch his own tech consulting firm to solve a recurring problem.
"A classic area many of my clients would get burned by was in the communication between what they need and what they get," he said.
And so, he served as their voices.
David partnered with large tech firms, translating requirements and specs, and ensuring his clients’ got the absolute most out of their investments. It was a great fit for his unique skill set and let him spend time with his children as they grew into teenagers.
In 2018, however, David was itching to get back into corporate leadership. After eight years of entrepreneurship, however, it was challenging to know where to begin, or how to best position his consulting experience so that it would resonate with recruiters and corporate decision makers. This is where JobJenny.com entered the equation.
What was Working with Jenny Like?
"I wasn't in a hurry," David said. "I knew I wanted to explore a few options to find that perfect niche. And, I knew I needed help with my resume."
At their first meeting, David plonked his resume down on the table and they dug in. The experience was more holistic than he expected.
"Before we even got into ‘the resume,’ we spent time talking about my goals: where I wanted home to be for my job, how long I wanted to do it… we discussed this as my last career stop. We talked about all kinds of issues around what was important to me in my job—money, duty, time, benefits."
After the initial meeting, Jenny and David built a snapshot the types companies he should reach out to and roughly defined the ideal next role. From there, Jenny and her team began to hone his resume and LinkedIn profile.
"They did a fantastic job of taking 30+ years of experience and getting it to work on one resume," says David.
How Fast Did Your Job Search Go?
As is often the case with Jenny's clients, David found that his “post-JobJenny” job search was significantly easier than he’d expected.
"I only did two interviews. Two! That’s because my presentation was so targeted," he said. "I truly believe that it was my resume that got me my new job."
(Jenny insists that it’s also because David just lights it up in everything he does.)
What’s Your New Job Like?
“I absolutely love my role at the Home Builders Association of Metro Portland. From the first meeting with the CEO, I knew it was where I wanted to be,” David said. “He was the perfect personality, and with the higher-level thinking that I like to do, I knew we'd complement each other.
“The staff and the CEO I work for are incredible,” he added. “And, our Board of Directors is equally incredible to work with. Every single thing I was promised coming on has been delivered."
Any Advice for Entrepreneurs Looking to Return to (or Land) a Corporate Role?
"Walk, don't run to Jenny's services!" he said.
Like many job seekers, David’s main obstacle was not knowing how to get noticed in the initial application process for a position—and, really, not knowing what he wanted to do next. Jenny's counsel and support made it possible to target his resume — and his entire job search — toward roles that would be a great fit, and to interview with confidence.
And, well. He did it. Congratulations, David!
Do you have a success story that you’d like featured on PROOF? If yes, be sure and send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love hearing about the amazing things you’re doing!
Photo: Provided by David Rice