High Performers are hard to find
By Charles Waldo
“Find me someone who gets things done; someone with the ‘Right Stuff.’”
In an earlier chapter of my professional life, I joined one of the U.S.’s Top Ten executive recruiting firms, doing upper and mid-level management recruitments, mainly in the Midwest, including Hamilton County. The above quote (or something like it) was often uttered -- with a lot of emotion (negative) -- by the CEO or another high-level executive during my first visit to their organization to see if I could help them fill a key position.
In most of these exploratory discussions the executive would admit at some point that they had looked inside their own ranks first (the right thing to do) but came up empty-handed. Not good. Then they ran ads, made industry inquiries, and contacted several contingency-fee- based recruiting firms. Again, no luck.
When asked why their efforts were unsuccessful, the executive generally responded with something like, “Oh, we got plenty of resumes, but I need a doer-type leader in this position; someone who has a track record of getting things done. Someone with the ‘right stuff.’ The fellows we reviewed all seemed to be “follower” types. We’ve given up on trying to do it ourselves and will pay your outlandish fee if you find and help bring on board the right person.”