CASE STUDIES

Big shoes to fill: Mind promoted to CEO, replacement required

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Our client is a $3billion global business spanning 200 countries and owns and manages a portfolio of the world’s best known sports, outdoor and fashion brands. Freshminds had recently placed a Corporate Associate who quickly excelled and was promoted to CEO of one of their portfolio brands. So we were tasked with quickly finding her replacement too!

The brief

Our client was looking for an individual from a strategy/investment background for the newly created Corporate Associate role, to spot and assess opportunities for potential investments/acquisitions for their Group brand portfolio.  The role would require due diligence, project management, research, and market entry analysis. Working at all stages of the deal process, this internal and external facing role required someone who the VP could trust to get things done, be adaptable and manage stakeholders at C-Suite level.

Freshminds had successfully placed an individual into the role recently from a top tier strategy firm. She was promoted to a CEO position in one of their acquired brands and as such we were tasked with filling the position again quickly in order to provide a smooth handover.

Who they needed:     

  • Individual with strategy/investment background
  • Top academics. Highly numerate/strategic skill-set, problem-solver and opportunity-spotter coupled with second to none stakeholder management skills and the gravitas required to get C-Suite executives on board and drive the deal process.

Challenges:

  • Salary level and wider package was slightly lower than typical roles at this level and
  • Personality fit was key given the required close working VP
  • Given the level of the replacement candidate chosen, the client needed to negotiate around the scope of the role moving forward
  • Freshminds had already recently conducted the search so had to re-approach the market and cover new ground very soon after the first search

What Freshminds did

  • Dedicated time to understanding role and selling benefits to candidates: Took a detailed brief both times and positioned the benefits of the opportunity to candidates based on their transferrable skill sets. We also ensure we provided expert and thorough recommendations and reasons for our candidate selections to the client, to aid them making as informed a decision as possible.
  • Used our established networks and targeted headhunting: Freshminds engaged with our established network of Strategy Consultants as well as head-hunting candidates from top tier firms. We also engaged with alumni networks to add breadth to our reach before carefully shortlisting and assessing candidates based on fit, skill-set and aspirations for the role
  • Rigorous screening and interviewing: Following a rigorous screening and interview process we were successful in placing the replacement individual, this time from an investment banking and entrepreneurial background.

Results

  • Freshminds shortlisted 8 of suitable individuals. Client interviewed all 8.
  • 2 candidates were placed in less than a year into the role - one from a top tier strategy firm and the other from an investment banking background.
  • The first candidate we placed quickly impressed and assumed a CEO position. She hit the ground running and is already making huge headway with the portfolio company’s performance as CEO. She is now hiring the team to help take her company to the next level of growth.
  • The second candidate we placed as her replacement is flourishing in the role today. She is now managing and mentoring a   graduate on the Group’s graduate scheme who is assisting her on investments.
  • The consulting skill set of the individuals – their mix of analytical/numerical ability coupled with outstanding communication skills – was recognised by Freshminds as highly transferable to this role. It has enabled both individuals to hit the ground running and truly excel in what was a brand new arena to them

Freshminds has since worked on a range of roles for the first candidate we placed who was promoted to CEO, to assist in building out her team.