Dafna Arieli found her job as Director of Meitav College – a part of the Meitav Investment House – via the Jobnet site.
Dafna, who is married and has two daughters, has a degree in legal studies and business administration with a specialty in finance. A lawyer by training, she arrived at her current job from the colleges. Previously she spent four and a half years working in various positions at the Building College, a part of the Israeli Construction Center. She has served as director of the college for the past two and a half years.
"Building College was an importance place for me and I really loved it. It was a learning opportunity for me, but after four and a half years at the college I was looking for my next job. It was very important to me to find a job that would be challenging and would take me to the next phase of my career. I wasn't looking for the title of director. I was also prepared to take a job at a larger organization in a lower position. What I was looking for was a step up."
On the job-search process:
"I spent five months at home with my daughters, which allowed me to conduct a relatively relaxed search. At first I didn't feel pressure to find work. My job at Building College had been very intensive and I felt the right thing to do was to take some time off to catch my breath and enjoy being with my second daughter, who was still a baby."
How did you conduct your search?
"The search was conducted primarily through the Internet. There were also meetings to get acquainted based on connections, which ultimately did not produce results. I had not been familiar with any website related to this field. I conducted a search on the Internet, which led me to job-search sites, including Jobnet. At first I worked with a whole lot of sites, but eventually I narrowed it down and wound up with five, including Jobnet. In retrospect I realize it's a shame I hadn't been familiar with Jobnet when I needed to find employees for the Building College.
"I devoted two days a week to this task. I sent my resume to a lot of companies and for a lot of job openings, and I kept precise records of where I sent it so that if I received a reply I would know what it was all about. I carried out the process in a very orderly way."
What kind of position were you looking for?
"My general direction was management and executive positions, not necessarily in the field of colleges, but I was drawn in that direction. I was also looking in the area of training, but not exclusively. I went to interviews that sounded fantastic, but when I got to the interview I realized the job was below my skill level. For the most part I was looking for executive management positions that did not entail ironclad hours. I was looking for people who gauge me according to my abilities, rather than counting the minutes. It was important that the job I found was business related. I looked for the business management aspect, not just operations."
Did you get a lot of offers?
"I certainly went to a lot of interviews. I got a very high reply rate to the resumes I sent out, but I was really picky. Since I had been the one who chose to leave my previous job and I made that choice in order to run my career the best way possible, it was very important to me to find a job that I was well suited to and which suited me. I decided not to compromise, even if the price was several months without income, which made the search easier and allowed me to make the right choices.
"The process was really draining, but I enjoyed some of the meetings a lot. It was a learning experience for me. You learn a whole lot from this. Some of the meetings were a terrible waste of time.
"One of the things I discovered was the need to define positions very precisely. People waste a lot of valuable time, both prospective employers and job candidates, because a considerable portion of positions are not defined precisely."
In the end, how did you arrive at Meitav College?
"I sent my resume to a Meitav position that had been advertised on Jobnet and then Meitav contacted me and began a very long and thorough process that included meetings with five high-level people at Meitav, and when the interview process was complete I was sent for a day of testing that lasted nine hours at the Adam Milo Institute.
"They wanted to be sure they had made the right decision. I agree with the process. It can diminish mistakes. Of course it doesn't prevent them completely, but it can decrease overlooked factors.
"At the end of this process I started right away. On a Thursday I was notified I'd been hired and on Sunday I was already on the job. That was on June 24th. It seems like a lot longer…"
On Meitav College:
"It's a fabulous place with amazing people. We have a staff that truly wants and is able to create and do things better. The staff has 14 people sitting here at the college and working on marketing, sales, advertising and operations. Those who build the training apparatuses are academic coordinators from each field who head the select professional staff of leading lecturers in their respective fields. The college has two divisions – courses on the capital market and preparatory courses for the GMAT, which is an admissions requirement for master's degree studies in business administration in Israel and abroad. The majority of the courses are held at the college itself, but there are also courses held within various companies and organizations. The human resources here are very good, including the longtime staff members and the new ones. It's a great staff of very intelligent people, very high caliber, who I really believe – and this is not just a slogan – can lead this place forward and make a breakthrough. The people here are very loyal and really care."
How was your breaking-in process here?
"Though people typically make out the reception of a new director as something very threatening, taking up the post here went very smoothly and the atmosphere was very positive. I come from a college and although the content worlds are very different, there is a lot in common in terms of management, so I didn't have to learn from square one. At Building College I conducted a similar process of increasing efficiency and outlining work processes, so that as soon as I arrived I knew where to turn and which questions to ask. I'm learning about this contents world, which is actually more to my liking than construction and real estate. I received full cooperation from the start."
What is your vision as the new director of Meitav College?
"My vision is to expand the college's activity, both in existing areas and areas just getting started. I see the college as a platform that doesn't have to remain only in the field of the capital market. Looking toward the future I see divisions/schools within the college involved in various fields."
In conclusion Dafna adds:
"I think I've come to the right place. I'm very pleased and feel I made the right choice. Now I have to prove they made the right choice. The burden of proof is on me."
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