The extra mile is never crowded. As the following case study shows, we take pride in the special attention we give each and every client.


A client approached us who was looking to expand its footprint in the United States with a new hire. We arranged a meeting with some of the client stakeholders and gathered information on each stakeholder’s idea of what the responsibilities of the new position would be, as well as the skills required for the role. In this initial phase, we uncovered some differences in their perspectives. The hiring manager and global leadership, who had equal say in the final decision, had different views of what they wanted.


After a few weeks of searching, we were able to present some suitable candidates, only to find that the client's goalposts had moved in the meantime. During its own interviewing process, the client had realized that it actually wanted a little more than it had been asking for. This is not unusual with smaller organizations and, while it caused more work for us, we were happy to adapt the search to match this new set of needs. This shift can also happen when there is a change of strategy or leadership during a search process. We all know what we know, but unknowns often occur, and it’s critical to be flexible.


It turns out the position was for a very special candidate. Finding a special candidate requires broad thought and an ability to read between the lines. In my search, I came across one particular candidate whose resume would normally not get a second glance but piqued my curiosity. How had this candidate come to study what he had, where he had? Why had he started and dropped so many courses? What had he been up to since graduating? I needed to know more, if only to satisfy my own curiosity.


I arranged an initial screening call with the candidate to determine whether he would pass our litmus test of knowledge and experience. It turned out the candidate not only understood the technology side, but had actually developed and patented a device that would help others who did not. Moreover, his ability to empathize and build relationships was exceptional. During our conversation, I gave this candidate a lot of room to share knowledge in confidence with me as a recruiter. And in doing so, I found the special sauce. His payback contribution to society outside of his job was part of his whole make up, and what made him who he was, but he had not wanted to share it because of his humility. If this amazing contribution to society was what he did in his free time, I was extremely confident of his ability to meet my client's needs for the position.


"The client said, 'Where did you find him? We want more.'"


We always present candidates to the client neutrally, and although the client was very skeptical it agreed to interview this unique candidate. It had deep reservations, but trusted the work we did. Normally, we ask candidates to send feedback immediately after the interview. In this case, I received a message—from both the candidate and the client—that they had scheduled a second appointment within a week, and the client said, “Where did you find him? We want more.”


In the end, the candidate was hired and loves his work, and the client is happy with the outcome. This hire not only delivers excellent business results, but has become an integral part of the small team and is helping the organization to grow in ways it had not imagined. For me, the bottom line is more than about a search agreement, it is about bringing people together to accomplish great things.