Madge Gibson, Partner at Jack Hammer Executive Headhunter, spoke to Margaret Harris.
Recruitment remains sluggish across the board except when it comes to executives. What is behind this trend?
A combination of factors, the restrictions of any economic downturn results in hiring freezes generally, yet despite this, companies still need highly skilled and seasoned executives to help run and steer their organisations through turbulent times. True and tested executives of this calibre are not a dime a dozen in the local market, which has always created its own demand.
What executive skills in particular are in demand?
Boards look for the assurance that the person they appoint in an executive capacity today brings a more holistic set of skills to the workplace, not just an educational pedigree.
Companies look for a successful track record in managing a business and driving market growth and shareholder value. But executives also need to be commercially astute, emotionally mature politically savvy and confident. Emotional intelligence is becoming more and more important in appointments. In addition, the ability to influence and lead is crucial.
Are certain sectors experiencing this more than others?
Trends come and go per economic cycle. Nothing is static. But the need for high-calibre, affordable talent will never cease, regardless of the industry.
Is this a global phenomenon or is it limited to South Africa?
This is a global phenomenon. Research done by IRC Global Executive Search Partners shows that there has been a “significant increase” in new CEO appointments globally. Particular to South Africa, however, is the additional demand of BEE and transformation targets.
Author: Margaret Harris
Source: Business Live