As Executive Search consultants our task is often to source and select individuals for boardrooms. However, we often find ourselves hunting for the c-suite people of tomorrow; enabling clients to futureproof their organisations from a succession perspective.
Common areas that we, and many businesses, explore when assessing perceived high potentials revolve around education levels, consistency of development through CV's and achievements against quantifiable challenges set.
For many years Collingwood has been fulfilling assignments for a global leader within technology. Through diversification of products, markets, organic and acquisitive growth, this client has leaned on us to proactively headhunt individuals who can be quickly fast tracked. One area they have always asked for us to assess when interviewing such people is their:
Receptiveness to feedback
The advantages to securing someone who has learnt to adapt and develop from the feedback provided by respected management is invaluably in their successes.
Asking an interviewee to structure how they have:
1. Taken feedback on a specific area (and / or time in their career)
2. How they reflected on this feedback and what actions they took to develop their understanding and / or change in an approach
3. How they improved or changed in the area and how results changed
This is especially important in sales roles, but can certainly apply to most disciplines including operations and marketing.
How has your potentially star interviewee adapted their approach or attitude to improve in certain areas and what successes did the change in approach spur?
While a willingness to listen to feedback is important, it’s those who proactively seek out feedback from a range of sources who stand to gain the most. Arguably, the fastest way to succeed is to quickly learn what works and what doesn’t, and colleagues are an indispensable resource in this process.