Insights

What Is Involved in Qualifying Executive Candidates?

Posted by Reed Flesher

Identifying top candidates for the C-suite is one of the most challenging jobs of an executive search firm. After all, these are critical, high-profile roles that have the power to define the direction of organizations and influence how the world sees them. Your clients trust you to help find the most qualified talent and help them make an informed decision. How can executive search firms step up to the challenge and what questions should you ask along the way to facilitate this process?

Asking the Right Questions

Vetting candidates is an exploratory process that starts with reviewing their experience on paper and learning more about them based on what you find online. However, one of the most revelatory steps in this process involves the phone screening and then the face-to-face interview, where you can ask the kind of hard-hitting questions that will give you an idea of not just their experience, but also who they are as people. Here are just a few questions you should be asking executive candidates.

  • What is your desired salary?
  • Why did you leave your last company?
  • What are your core values and how do you define leadership?
  • If you are currently employed, why do you want to leave your current role?
  • To what other companies have you applied?
  • Are you able to relocate or travel frequently?
  • What other considerations do you have? A home to sell, family to relocate, a spouse who needs a job, etc.
  • Are you under a non-compete agreement? If so, what are the terms?
  • All executive-level jobs require an in-depth background check. Is there anything that could show up on yours such as bankruptcies, tax liens, a criminal record, DUI, etc.?

Conduct a Personality Test

Just like a variety of temperaments can balance a team, having diverse personalities can do the same for boards and the c-suite. More organizations are turning to personality tests to achieve this, using software and other standardized methods to assess skills, values, critical thinking, and other attributes that align with their vision of leadership.

Keep in mind that as an executive recruiter, it is not just your job to find and place top talent, but to ensure that your client will be able to retain them. Vetting for aspects of the hire beyond the resume and background checks help to ensure that they will have a well-rounded and collaborative leadership team.

Find the Right Software

Of course, there are some aspects of executive recruiting — i.e., the “human” factor — that cannot be automated. Still, the right talent stack can help you gather information, react more swiftly to insights, and make better-informed decisions for your clients. Thrive TRM is beloved by both internal hiring teams and external recruiters for the data-driven hiring insights and the collaborative platform it provides. Track each step of your executive hiring process and hire qualified talent by contacting us today.

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