It is not out of the ordinary for unemployed executives to be without work for up to a year. It is a fact that there are fewer executive level jobs in the market and a growing pool of unemployed and employed executives looking for a better position. To compound the issue of being unemployed, out of work execs have complex severance agreements with non-compete clauses. Because executive jobs are resource intensive and expensive to an organization, candidates are thoroughly vetted. After a year, the non-compete has expired. What do you do?
Consider a consulting gig or volunteering
Lengthy stints of unemployment causes employers to look at you like you are damaged or that you have lost your edge if you are doing nothing.
Let them know that you are in demand
When the interviewer asks if you have anything going on, let them know that you have had some offers, but you have declined. Be honest about why you did not accept the offer.
Finally, stay cool.
Being desperate is never a good. Never let a potential employer know that you do not have anything going on at any particular time. Always refer to checking your calendar.
The final tip is having a good team helping and supporting you. Find a good executive search firm and start to build personal relationships with people in your network.