When You Need a New CEO, You Need a CEO Recruiting Firm

Jason Hanold
4 min readOct 16, 2019

Finding the right CEO for your company is essential for obvious reasons. You need to select a leader who has the right skills, experience, and attitude to inspire your team and position your organization for success.

Thus, it’s important to take your time when seeking a new CEO. You can’t settle for a less than optimal choice simply because you were trying to expedite the process.

That said, the more time you spend looking for a new CEO, the less time you have to focus on growing your business — and the more time you spend without a permanent leader, which can make investors, customers, or business partners feel uncertain about your strength or long-term viability. That’s why it may be a good idea to work with a CEO recruiting firm instead. The following are just a few reasons why:

CEO Recruiting Firms Are Staffed by Experts

The process of finding the right CEO isn’t merely time-consuming. It can also be more complicated than you might realize. It’s necessary to determine where to find candidates, how to make an offer attractive, how to conduct interviews that reveal crucial details, how to vet candidates properly, and much more. Additionally, new breakthroughs are frequently being made in recruitment technology. To perform the strongest possible search, you need to not only familiarize yourself with these tools, but implement them effectively.

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You may not have experience with such tasks. If this is the case, you’re better off working with experts who know how to find CEOs for companies. The experience and expertise of the best executive search firms will help you find the right candidate more efficiently.

Accessing More Candidates of Higher Quality

Executive search firms develop connections with many C-suite executives and senior VPs, either concentrated within your industry or across several. Over time, this results in a vast network of quality potential candidates.

That means that working with such a firm will give you access to a larger and more qualified pool of candidates than you would likely find on your own. Depending on the firm you retain, they may have contacts in and experience recruiting for a broad range of industries as well — so they can connect you to talented candidates from outside your industry who may nevertheless be an excellent match for your organization.

Keeping it Confidential

Ideally, your current CEO is performing well. You may only need to find a new one as part of a coordinated, planned succession or transition strategy.

However, this is not always the case. There are instances when CEOs simply don’t meet expectations. There are several reasons why this can happen, but, depending on the nature of their performance issues, you may want to work with them to make improvements before looking for a replacement.

Unfortunately, there are also times when a current CEO simply isn’t going to work out. As you begin to look for a replacement, you probably want to keep the search a private matter that only a small circle of upper level executives are aware of. Disruptive internal staff conflicts could result if your search for a new CEO became common knowledge.

Luckily, when you work with a CEO recruiting firm, that’s not something you need to worry about. They keep your information confidential, allowing you to maintain a degree of necessary secrecy during the early stages of the search.

Actively Searching

It’s worth noting that the top recruiting firms don’t just create a job listing and send it to their contacts when helping you find a new CEO. They take an active, dynamic approach, working hard to find candidates that meet your organization’s unique leadership needs and culture.

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This doesn’t merely help you find more candidates of better quality — it also makes it easier to find excellent candidates who aren’t actively looking but may be open to the right opportunity.

Guarding Against Unwanted Surprises

No executive search firm can promise the CEO they’ve found for you will stay with your organization for years to come. However, executive search professionals understand that turnover can be expensive for a company — and frequent turnover at the CEO level can project instability, which in turn can harm your bottom line. Because of this, they strive to identify candidates who are not only experienced, skilled, and a good culture fit, but also ethical and truly committed to leading your organization.

Allowing for Growth

Once more, finding a new CEO is a complicated, multi-step process. If you take it on yourself, you’ll need to be willing to divert your focus away from other responsibilities to a certain degree, until you find the right candidate.

This can hamper your organization’s growth. If you’re spending a large portion of your time looking for a CEO, other areas of your business could suffer.

This is among the most significant reasons to work with a CEO recruiting firm. They’ll handle the major tasks in the process, allowing you to focus on what you do best, while finding candidates who will lead your organization into the future.

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Jason Hanold

Executive Recruiter, clients NFL, Google, Patagonia, Under Armour, Gucci, Nike, Northwestern, eBay, UFC, Vail, REI, Electronic Arts, Live Nation, #HR #Recruiter