Seeking out the Science on Search Firms, Part II

Last month, we introduced two types of search firms and discussed what they look for in candidates. In this month’s blog, we explore how you can best identify and network with a search firm. Element 1: There are so many firms out there. How do I know which firms to target? As an executive, the search firm’s experience in your industry and/or job function becomes paramount. The firms you work with should have a background in placing positions like the one you want. By searching websites like BlueSteps and ExecuNet, you can target a firm and search consultant who cover industries and roles that are a fit for you. You can also ask your executive-level peers for suggestions of firms to work with, as they will most likely have many contacts of their own. Before you engage too deeply with a firm, be sure to check the executive search firm’s references, and even look at their performance metrics – i.e., how many days does it take them to fill a position. Also, as you’ll work with … [Read more...]

Seeking out the Science on Search Firms

What forms the basis of any science, such as astronomy or chemistry? A body of knowledge, of course. As there is a lot to learn about recruiters and executive search firms, they also happen to be a science in themselves, with many “elements.” If you’re an executive looking for a new opportunity, read on to learn about the different types of search firms and what they do, plus what they look for and expect from C-level candidates. Element 1: What do search firms do, anyway? Recruiters and search firms find a successful candidate for a chosen role, and there’s a lot that goes into that. The firm may draft the job description; develop a short list of candidates for the firm; assess the candidates for a cultural fit with the hiring organization; and share the final candidates for the job with their client. Element 2: Are all search firms the same? In a word, no! Search firms fall into one of two categories – contingency and retained search.  And choosing one isn’t all that … [Read more...]