Friday, March 23, 2007

And the Search Goes On

My colleague Joseph Daniel McCool ExecuNet's Senior Contributing Editor who writes our newsletter RecruitSmart Today recently returned from attending the Association of Executive Search Consultants annual conference.

In sharing his feedback on the conference, Joe reported that one of the keynote speakers was Geoff Colvin of Fortune whose remarks were focused on the eternal search for the magic potion that produces competitive advantage in the unforgiving world of business.

While Colvin talked about the usual suspects such as people, cultures and the relationship betweent the two, he also felt that in today's economy, and in a broader social contex, things like ethics, leadership, and executive transition and mobility also played a key roles.

Really? Haven't they always? Certainly "leadership" (the holy grail of business) and ethics (a concept that seems all too foreign in many businesses these days - read Enron et al) we hear from members all the time who are thankful for the moblity factor. Why? Because it gives them the opportunity to look for an organization where by day they can apply their talents and walk out at night with a feeling of pride at not having to feel guilty for having made a profit.

Surveys such as our Executive Job Market Intelligence Report as well as many others around the country have long reported distrubing stats around job satisfaction at the executive level, and Jerry Maguire notwithstanding, it's not about the money.

In my wishful thinking approach to life, I keep trying to convince myself that leadership, ethics, cultures, and profit are not terms that are mutually exclusive, or are they?

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