As a global executive search software provider, we have seen search firms and in-house teams increase their emphasis on managing and tracking executive assessments. More and more search teams are focusing on collecting candidate competency information. Some of the key data points they are analyzing include:
- Leadership Success
- Cultural Agility
- Attitude (Introvert/Extrovert)
- Communication (Tone/Inflection/Volume)
- Relationship Building Ability
- Strategic Intent
- Complex Analytical Thinking
- Big-picture Conceptual Thinking
- Emotional Intelligence
- Organizational Intelligence
- Problem Solving Skills
Depending on the role, some of these variables may carry more weight than others. Many firms are also measuring a candidate’s ability to learn, develop, and admit mistakes - key traits for executive development and growth.
Lastly, there is a common trend towards tracking candidate potential. Since candidate potential is a broad area, it is best evaluated by a team, looking at a hybrid of competencies and measuring them through different perspectives.
How do we remove the issue of unconscious bias when it comes to executive assessments?
Unconscious bias can lead to poor hiring decisions or, even worse, to missing out on candidates that are a better fit. Be more strategic in your assessments. Use questionnaires and performance-based determining factors. Do not favor those who have similar traits, characteristics, or opinions. There may be many gaps when it comes to how qualities are perceived, which is why many firms are beginning to rely heavily on demonstration-based assessments in conjunction with behavior-based psychological assessments.
Make sure you have a good integration plan.
What kind of orientation will the executive receive? How do you plan on integrating them within the culture? What tools will they be given to be able to quickly adapt and develop into their role? How will they connect with the next generation of talent? These points should be evaluated before and after the executive starts.
Capturing your assessment data is crucial for future growth.
Having a central database to capture and reuse your proprietary data is crucial in setting you apart from your competition. Every search firm has access to online resources like Linkedin. It is your firm’s assessments and internal knowledge that sets you apart from the marketplace. Make sure you create a good plan for managing this information.
Taking surveys and tracking data points that pinpoint leadership requirements will help your firm save time in the future. What combination of skills worked best in certain industries, countries, and roles? How quickly did that executive adapt? What helped them achieve success? Which blend of qualities led to the most successful hires? This information will be vital in handling future assessments and will ultimately help your firm build a better talent pipeline.