It’s not the work that makes an organization, but the leadership.
From a simplified, associate-level perspective, day-to-day activities across companies will remain largely the same. For many, what makes a company a great place to work isn’t the work itself, but the culture, leadership and trust among individuals within the company. Building a successful leadership team can be challenging. Without a dynamic, collaborative and innovative C-Suite, your company is at risk of remaining stale and losing more employees to the ongoing Great Resignation.
If you find yourself looking to hire for a leadership position, consider these tips to improve your company’s culture, leadership and trust.
Target Soft Skills
Leaders in an organization rarely get to put their hard skills, such as creative writing or calculus, to the test. They can use their intimate understanding of and background in these skills to help guide their decisions and lead their team, but what is more important than how well they can write a news release or calculate a payroll increase are the soft skills they utilize among their peers and those they manage.
Focusing on soft skills can help build a strong leadership team that fosters and encourages growth from the top down. In fact, on-the-job experience and proven demonstration of these skills are usually more important than any hard knowledge that candidates may have. Learn how certain skills can make or break your C-Suite:
- Communication: Does this candidate keep their colleagues up-to-date with projects? Are they able to clearly convey ideas and work to eliminate confusion? Do they speak well of the company and can they represent the company publicly?
- Integrity: Are they respectful and honest? When a mistake occurs, how do they approach it and work to remedy it? Do you trust them to do the right thing?
- Flexibility: Is this candidate able and willing to change paths on a dime? Can they work within quick deadlines under pressure?
- Willingness to learn: Nobody knows everything, and leaders of a company are no exception. Do members of your C-Suite continue to learn the latest industry trends? Do they acknowledge their mistakes and look for ways to improve the process next time?
Consider All Candidates
This tip may seem obvious, but it is crucial to make the most of your recruiting process. Every candidate who comes across your desk should be given full consideration of how they can succeed in an executive role. It may take less time to consider some candidates versus others, but automatically excluding a candidate can leave some of your best leaders out of the running. Remember: while hard skills are important, soft skills focused on leading people are what will make your company thrive.
Internal candidates can prove to be exceptional leaders in any organization. If they are a tenured employee, they have shown a dedication to the company and the work they do. They should know, at least on a basic level, how the organization is run and what the goals of the company are. Internal candidates have established a sense of credibility in their application, and oftentimes it is a natural progression to climb the ladder from an associate position to a more executive role.
External candidates with an impressive track record in similar positions can help bring in veteran experience and leadership. If an external candidate has proven they were able to improve another organization in a similar role before, chances are they can do the same for you. External candidates can also bring in fresh perspectives and ideas to your company’s workflow.
If every person in your board room looks and thinks the same, then what’s the point of having more than one person in the room? Bring in people who think outside the box or approach ideas from multiple perspectives and unique angles. Representation in your leadership team is also vital for employees to see people who look or think like they do — or like they don’t. New people and ideas promote critical thinking and challenge others to get outside their comfort zone and expand their knowledge and worldview.
If your conversations are stale, chances are your company will be, too. A dynamic, collaborative team should promote ideation and creativity at the heart of every conversation. If you’re stuck between two qualified candidates, consider how they will challenge your ideas and improve the goals of the team. You can always put them to the elevator test: would you want to be stuck with them in an elevator for a prolonged period of time?
Assemble Your C-Suite With Talance Group
Finding the right candidates for your rockstar C-Suite can be challenging. It isn’t a small decision to make, and one you shouldn’t take lightly. Talance Group can help you take the first steps toward improving your company from the top down.
Talance Group is one of Houston’s fastest growing companies. We bring top candidates with the right talent and balance to organizations like yours. Our experienced team of search consultants can help get you started on assembling your successful leadership team. Contact us today to learn more.