There are so many search consulting firms these days that it can be difficult to choose among them. How do you narrow down your choices? How do you ensure that you are working with a well-reputed, distinguished firm that will guarantee success in your company’s search? There are a few essential qualities that any great search consultant should possess. When looking to work with a search consulting firm, be sure to look for the following:
- The search consultant you hire should already have a strong understanding of your industry. They should be knowledgeable about the specific hiring practices of your industry and they should be familiar with your industry’s jargon, otherwise you could end up picking up the slack.
- Confidence and a tendency to be extroverted are both extremely important. Of course, you do not want a bossy, overbearing search consultant. However, a strong personality is definitely a plus because your search consultant needs to be able to find and approach people on your behalf without a moment’s hesitation. A search consultant must also be able to ask hard questions and navigate potentially difficult issues without reluctance.
- Exceptional listening skills are essential. Your search consultant should be able to listen carefully when you describe your company’s goals and ambitions and your requirements for candidates. This is particularly important when you are searching for executive-level candidates. In addition, without this indispensable trait, how will you know that your search consultant is carefully screening candidates in order to find the best individuals for your consideration? A search consultant who is a careful listener will get it right the first time.
- You want to work with a search consultant who is willing to go the extra mile. Someone who responds to your phone calls, emails and task-related requests in a timely manner. A good search consultant will go above and beyond the call of duty.
- Your relationship with your search consultant should continue even after the fee has been paid. A good search consultant has great follow up and will check in periodically to ensure that their placement still fits, even after the fact.