Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Hiring an Executive Search Firm at GM

News reports indicate that the federal government pressured new General Motors Chairman of the Board Kent Kresa to hire Spencer Stuart, an executive search firm, to recruit new directors for the firm. Now, I understand and respect the function of executive search firms. However, I'm a bit shocked that we would be spending taxpayer dollars to hire a search firm to find new directors for GM. Why can't the federal government's hand-picked Chairman, Kent Kresa, and those "brains" at the U.S. Treasury find good solid directors on their own? Kresa apparently wanted to do this on his own. I can understand not wanting him to simply hand select them completely on his own, but do we really want to hire a search firm at a company that is bleeding cash at this rate? After all, we didn't hire a search firm when the federal government decided to hire a new CEO. Isn't the CEO position a bit more important than board positions? We have the federal government making strategic decisions about the brands GM should shut down and the kinds of cars that they should build, yet those same federal officials do not feel capable of identifying and selecting board candidates. What sense does that make?


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Retained recruiters work for the organizations who are their clients, not for job candidates seeking employment, in some countries, such as the UK, recruiters are not legally permitted to charge candidates. In the U.S. job candidates may pay an up front retainer to consulting or counselling firms to assist them in their job search. Such firms are not typically known as retained recruiters but may provide recruiting services to organizations and therefore share the descriptive nature of the title.
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Prathima Chandir said...

Retain an executive search consultant if your organization wants to recruit executives now employed by competitors or other employers.
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