Recent years have brought about drastic changes in the process of recruiting and hiring personnel in sports. More and more often colleges, universities, and professional sports teams are choosing to employ executive search firms in order to recruit talent, discreetly review potential hires, or even negotiate big-money contracts.
The need to lobby help from executive search teams largely derives from organizations’ fears of hiring the wrong people to be coaches. Too often stories of scandal, immoral, and unethical conduct are reported on the behavior and methods of college and professional coaching practices. Examples of this are endless, but some include: University of Louisville’s head coach, Rick Pitino, enticing prospects with sex workers, Colorado head coach, Gary Barnett, luring recruits with strippers, sex, and drugs, and the University of North Carolina’s tactic of passing student-athletes in classes that didn’t even have teachers. Unfortunately, the list goes on and on, and has been growing and evolving for decades. But, with the help of executive search teams, organizations can eliminate the guesswork and risk that accompanies taking on new outside hires to fill roles of leadership and responsibility.
The sheer volume of executive search firms is ever-expanding, but some of the big players include the following: Parker Executive Search, Ventura Executive Search, Eastman & Beaudine, and CarrSports Consulting. And, while each of these search firms tends to implement their own unique method of completing this process, the gist of their efforts remain the same:
- use a compilation of data, statistics, past experience, and personal observation to pinpoint the best potential prospects for the open position
- do background checks on potential recruits to lower the possibility of risk
- act as the middle-man between organizations and potential new hires to maintain discretion during the recruiting process
- and, occasionally negotiate contracts between new hires and their organizations
On paper, this seems like a fairly airtight process for finding and placing successful personnel in sports management positions. And, the results speak for themselves. According to athleticdirectoru.com, hiring a search firm will result in 1.3 more winning percentage points (per their algorithm) than not hiring a search firm in all situations other than hiring from within one’s organization. This is why organizations are willing to pay these search firms annual retainers of anywhere between $50,000 to $200,000.
But, why does hiring or not hiring a search firm make a difference in success rate when an organization hires from within? Why do search firms give organizations such a leg up on the competition in the case of outside hires but not inside hires?
Because an inside hire will be someone the organization already knows well. They will be aware of the prospect’s personality, behavior, motivations, and values before the position even becomes available. So, when that position does open up, that organization is confident in its inside hire’s capability to execute the job well and work harmoniously within their team’s environment.
Knowing your prospect well before offering them a position of leadership and responsibility is paramount to the success and effectiveness of that prospect within your organization.
This is why Profile specializes in “assisted executive search,” a very niche component of the recruiting and hiring process of college and professional sports teams. We collaborate with potential hires found by executive search firms in order to help round out all aspects of that prospect. The search firms find your prospects based on data, facts, statistics, and observations. They will compile all the tangible evidence of why this person would be a good fit for your organization and will steer you toward hiring that prospect. Yes, hiring staff and personnel for college athletics should involve statistics and data. But, it is a mistake to think that the process should rely exclusively on numbers.
That’s why Profile takes the search firms’ fact-finding one step further — we will tell you how that prospect will actually behave in your organization. Will they be a stickler for the rules? Will they work hard? Will they struggle when it comes to communication?
Then, we’ll tell you what they value in life, and, in turn, what they hope to get out of the work they put into it. Are they driven by the need to make large sums of money? Do they have inner conflicts that could potentially hold them back in certain situations? Do they value freedom more over the willingness to collaborate with a team?
And, lastly, we will tell you what factors motivate them in life. What drives that person to succeed or stay stagnant? Are they more interested in lending a helping hand to those around them, or wielding their will over those nearest to them?
We will compile all of this data on your prospect’s innate behavior, their inner values, and their outward motivations in an easy to read and comprehend report that will tell you more about what kind of person your prospect is beneath the surface than any compilation of data, statistics, or observations could configure.
And, we will manage to provide all of this in an efficient, user-friendly, mobile software. With a simple text message, Profile can send anyone, anywhere the link to take our three Fortune 500 behavioral assessments specially designed for the world of college athletics. We get the assessment to you quickly, your prospect takes it in less than half an hour, and the assessment report is in your hand in moments. Then, you can be content in knowing the decision you make will be well informed and well rounded — you will truly know what kind of person your prospect is and who they are behind their mask.
With our groundbreaking behavioral assessment technology working in collaboration with the proven success of executive search firms, Profile can only strengthen our mission to:
- help you hire intelligently
- coach, train and retain top talent
- and, eliminate cancerous cultures on the fringe of failure.
With the combined efforts of skilled executive search firms and Profile’s mobile technology, we can ensure our clients are hiring the right people for their organizations. Let’s lessen the risk, eliminate the guesswork, and put an end to avoidable scandals in sports. Let’s work together to help you hire the right people.
Chad Q. Brown’s Profile is a retained consulting firm incorporating distinct team building and talent strategies utilizing proprietary technology and behavioral assessment infrastructure. Our mission — help people get better at people.
Chad Q. Brown