When it comes to recruiting and hiring for executive level positions, not all candidates are created equal. Unfortunately, as leading executive headhunters in Northern, CA, Pacific Staffing knows it can take some time to spot a bad executive hire. The damage done in the meantime – in the form of weak direction and poor leadership – can significantly degrade the company’s culture and productivity.

To help you minimize the chance of a hiring mistake, consider the following qualities when recruiting your next executive level hire:

#1. Functional Expertise

First and foremost, the individual you hire must be a functional expert in the area you need them – whether it’s operations, accounting, HR, or something else entirely. They need to have a grasp of the challenges and opportunities they will be facing once hired.

That said, you also need consider that the candidate is the right person for the scale of your organization. In other words, if your business employs 20 people, then is the individual who headed up a multi-million dollar corporation and led a team of 200 really the right pick for you?

Another area to look at when assessing functional expertise is the candidate’s reputation in the field. For instance, are they well respected? And did former subordinates feel like they learned from this person?

#2. Strong Leadership Skills

A candidate may be an expert in the field – and may have a strong grasp on the nuts and bolts, but that does not necessarily make them a good leader. When searching for the right executive for your team, assess past leadership abilities.

Were they able to build strong teams in former positions? Will they be able to do the same at your company? How so? These are the critical questions you need to find answers to before making a hiring decision.

#3. Excellent Communication Skills

Insufficient communication is one of the top reasons projects fail. Effective executives must be able to communicate persuasively with a variety of stakeholders, both internally and externally. Part of an executive’s job is to launch new initiatives, so being able to influence others is key to success in these kinds of positions, as are written communication, negotiating, and conflict resolution skills.

#4. A Clear Vision

Successful executives must be forward thinking – envisioning the possibilities and enlisting others to participate in their view of the future. They must be able to clearly communicate that vision, provide support for achieving it and be willing to live the results of it. Another aspect of hiring an executive with vision is focusing on those who can not only think strategically about their own function, but can also think about how their function can become a competitive advantage for the company.

#5. The Ability to Collaborate

No executive operates in a vacuum. It’s important to hire those who can “play well with others” so to speak, including both peers and subordinates. Doing so will result in a mutually supportive environment that has a positive impact on the entire company.

Executive recruiting is an important building block for your company. And considering the impact it can have, the key is to take it slow. If you need expert help with the process, call Pacific Staffing. As leading executive headhunters in Northern, CA, we have extensive experience in sourcing, evaluating and helping companies hire mission critical professionals for top positions.

To learn more about how we can help your organization, please contact us today.