Clients : Who You Are

Welcome. If you’ve found your way here, you’re either someone we approached who wants to check us out, or you want to approach us because you’re looking for a new job. Either way, we appreciate your thoroughness. If you fit into the first category, here’s a little about who we are and what will happen next with your candidacy. “We called you – now what?”

If you’re looking for a job, here’s some information we hope will be helpful:

First of all, we genuinely care about you as a human being, and as a professional. We wish you all the career success you deserve and honestly want to see you rise as far as you can in terms of responsibility and compensation.

It’s a rainy Saturday afternoon and I’m tackling a backlog of old search files. They stay in binders for awhile after the search is completed, and then are reduced to their electronic essentials to save space. As I leaf through the records, candidate reports and original resumes catch my eye. Jim, the finalist. Mary, to whom they made an offer. Sam, who came in number two. Jane, who was so perfect for this but couldn’t relocate.

I know that Jim is still with my client. He’s been promoted. Mary’s company was acquired and her career was set back a bit – perhaps she should have taken the job. Sam was my successful candidate on a different search six months later. Where is Jane now? She was happy in her community but has her career advanced? What about this other guy, Russ? And several others, we haven’t heard from them since the search. Some we’ve kept up with, others we haven’t. Some we find on LinkedIn, some are M.I.A. Some of those interactions turned into relationships, others never did.

I remember seeing one person in the Styles section of the New York Times, looking great at a charity ball. Another was quoted in O’Dwyer’s. Then I read in PR Week that a former candidate died. Saddened, I call the person who first recommended him to us. He’s shocked, having not heard the news. We commiserate. An hour later the supposedly-deceased fellow calls, quoting Mark Twain (“reports of my demise…”) Despite a relatively uncommon name, there were two of them. We get a chuckle out of it. I google myself and find a defrocked Episcopalian priest, an artist, and a spokesman for the tobacco industry. Perhaps I should use my middle initial more often!

These weekend reviews of candidates are refreshingly human moments in an increasing digital world. I enjoy them, and candidates’ reaction is usually positive, glad that a search firm remembers them and is keeping an eye on their careers.


That’s the good news. The other news is that we are a for-profit corporation. Our clients are the companies that retain us to conduct searches for them. We do not (and ethically cannot [see AESC Code of Ethics]) charge candidates to work on their behalf to find them jobs. Therefore much of the time candidates would like us to spend speaking with them, answering questions, counseling them does not produce revenue for our firm. (Not now, not later. Candidates often express the opinion that “they’ll remember” our investment of time with them later when they are in positions to retain firms for searches. In fact, it rarely works out that way.) What seems like “just two minutes” to a candidate adds up when multiplied by many candidates. We are happy to spend this time with active candidates on specific searches, but have found over the years that it is unproductive for us to do so with unsolicited ones. At the same time, we really do want them to get good advice that helps them and to share the benefits of our experience with them. So, the solution is to put it down here and direct candidates to these pages. We apologize if you wanted more “quality time” with us, but if you find the advice here useful, we probably WILL be spending that time with you on a search assignment sooner or later. So, delve in, read up and best of luck in your career.