Conduct Industry Analysis
Once a candidate profile is developed, you can begin to identify similar companies that have
experienced significant growth or desired outcomes due to innovative products, services or
processes. While the company’s immediate industry is the right place to start, domain expertise is not always the most important requirement for a leader. In some situations, knowledge
of target markets, success scaling a company within a certain revenue range or experience
working with financial sponsors may be more important to the company’s success.
Identify Executives and Validate Capabilities
After finding the right companies for sourcing candidates, the next step is to identify individuals within those companies who are responsible for setting and executing the strategic
vision and building the infrastructure to support growth. Extensive due diligence—including
confidential talks with a range of sources who have worked with the candidates—is essential to pinpoint the best individuals and verify their contributions to company success.
The success of high-growth companies can be incorrectly attributed to senior executives
that happened to be in the right place at the right time. The CEO may not be the main driver
of growth, so in conducting a CEO search be sure to identify and evaluate other executive
leaders to determine who fits the desired profile.
Ultimately, innovation alone does not guarantee commercial success. Many innovative
companies have failed because they were unable to commercialize their products or ser-
vices. Putting in place the right leadership to capitalize on a company’s potential is crucial to
achieving significant and sustainable growth. //
JM Search is an executive search firm serving private equity and venture capital-backed
businesses in the middle market.