Monday, October 30, 2006

The New Talent Agents of Corporate America

In the world of executive recruitment two disciplines are converging. Executive search and executive coaches... with a twist. I met this morning with Susan Howington who has spent several years in executive search, but now has gone independent. But she is no longer in executive search. She has switched to being an "executive agent". Now don't think that what she is doing is anything like the "pay-to-find-a job" services that are already out there. She is not.

What she is is more like being a sports agent, or a talent agent of the Hollywood sense. She finds business talent of the highest level and signs them up as a "client". What these executives want is someone to find them "the next best place" to demonstrate their talent -- while they continue to shine in the place where they are. Cool!

Imagine, in corporate America, having a personal agent on the street making connections, searching opportunities... looking for the next "star" gig. My first thought is, "it's about time!"

Her thoughts on the matter -- Too many of the corporate stars are so busy being corporate stars that they have no time to capitalize on what they do best. Why shouldn't they have an agent to promote their talent and enable even greater success? In the end everyone wins. The best person doing exactly what will produce the largest results. And then there is executive coaching.

An executive agent, like Susan, can mentor an executive in understanding what they do best. And she holds them accountable for producing on their own commitments. "Do you want to be a star? You have to act like one and produce like one!" Like in the movie "Jerry McGuire", "help me help you!"

I like this new role in the infrastructure of corporate America. Agents of business talent that can match roles to people and people to roles so that the best things happen fast. As soon as Susan has a web presence I will provide the link. Considering how busy she is it just might be a few months before she needs to advertise.