Where Strategy Meets Search: Setting the Right Priorities

It wasn’t that long ago when finding the top executives for your organization included in-person meetings with candidates, lunch dates with colleagues across the industry to share leads, and live events where connections could be made and relationships built. The global pandemic certainly changed everyone’s traditional approach to executive hiring.

As the pandemic continues to have a significant impact on how we work and how we identify top executive candidates for organizations, now is a good time to take stock of the changes we’ve seen so far and develop an executive search strategy that meets today’s realities. We may be inching back to something that looks like our pre-pandemic assumptions and processes, but the reality is that the only thing we can be certain of is that we will always need to be ready for more changes—and to expect that constant change will become the new normal.

This is the intersection of strategy and search, and it begins with setting the right priorities.

Surveys of both executives looking for new positions and those looking to fill C-suite roles point towards the recognition that the new normal has to include an evolving approach to work locations, health and safety requirements, new technologies, and a workforce that is mobile and shifting. These changes are taking place even faster than most companies looking to develop their executive search strategy could anticipate.

The number one trend that was dramatically accelerated over the past 18 months was remote work, using virtual platforms to conduct business that was almost always done in-person pre-pandemic. That meant a massive reliance on technology, whether video platforms for those working from home or technologies to keep people safe who had to be on location. These transformations had to happen quickly, but what newer executive search surveys show are somewhat surprising—most executives believe that a hybrid experience is the new model that is more attractive than either a fully on-site situation or one that is purely virtual.

Randstad’s “workmonitor” recently surveyed more than 800 executives in its semiannual survey of the global workforce. The survey confirmed widespread support for the hybrid model, with nearly four out of five professionals wanting to return to their workplaces at least part of the time. Many reported that they missed in-person interactions with colleagues, with 54 percent stating they prefer a hybrid workplace in which they have the freedom to choose where they work.

This is why executive search needs to be strategic. To attract the top executives, organizations must develop a strategy to navigate what executives want while avoiding a fractured workplace where some are afforded the ability to work remotely while others are required to be onsite. Organizations must identify the right priorities for how that hybrid approach can attract top talent to their executive bench. For company leaders, a downsized office that supports a hybrid culture might look quite different than a pre-pandemic workplace. The focus may be more on collaboration in the office, with task-driven actions reserved for remote work.

Dinte brings strategy to executive search. For nearly 30 years ago, global leaders in Aerospace & Defense and other Government-Driven markets have turned to Dinte for its unmatched industry expertise and track record identifying and evaluating the right talent to help organizations succeed and grow. We are equipped with the right tools and mindset to help you reach your executive search goals.