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When Security Measures and Job Searches Clash: A Director's Guide to Strategic Career Moves

In the heart of NYC, Governor Hochul's recent move to station 1000 National Guard personnel across the subway system has sparked a whirlwind of debate. At first glance, it appears as a robust action to curb the rising tide of subway crimes. However, peel back this metallic veneer, and you'll find a strategy not unlike the frustrating and often futile "Easy Apply" button on LinkedIn job postings. This is especially poignant for you, Directors in the high-stakes world of investment banking, where every move counts. 


The Illusion of Action 

Just as the deployment of the National Guard in subway stations serves as a glossy, superficial assurance to tourists rather than a genuine solution to underlying issues like mental health and homelessness, the "Easy Apply" feature on job boards is a mirage in the desert of job hunting. It presents the illusion of progress in your job search, a quick-fix solution that, in reality, does little to advance your career. At the Director level, where competition is fierce and roles are complex, relying on such methods is akin to applying a Band-Aid to a gaping wound. 

A Personal Anecdote: From Layoff to Liftoff 

Reflecting on my own journey post-2007 layoff from Credit Suisse, I waded through the same murky waters of online applications, sending out resumes into the void by the hundreds. Yet, the lifeline that pulled me to shore wasn't found online but through the power of networking. A friend's referral was the golden key that unlocked my next opportunity. This experience was a stark reminder that the essence of a successful job search, particularly at the executive level, lies beyond the impersonal click of a button. 

The Strategic Path Forward 

So, Directors, I urge you not to fall into the same trap as Governor Hochul's well-intentioned but misguided strategy. Instead, embrace the art of strategic networking. Forge genuine connections, engage in meaningful conversations, and cultivate relationships that extend beyond superficial interactions. In the realm of investment banking, where every handshake can turn the tide of your career, such authentic engagements are your most valuable currency. 

For more actionable insights and networking strategies tailored to your executive journey, I invite you to explore:

Remember, in a world where the illusion of action is often mistaken for progress, your strategic, genuine efforts in networking are the true catalysts for career advancement. 


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Mike Mittleman is a career coach whose business focuses on investment banking finance professionals based in the NY/CT/NJ tri-state area, helping navigate their career paths with confidence and success. For more tips and personalized coaching, visit



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