Honoring Your Performance Guarantee: How to Avoid Executive Vetting Errors

You’ve signed the contract, created your shortlist of vetted talent, and presented it to the client. You’ve done an incredible job based on the information you have, and your client will now seriously consider their choices based on the information you’ve given them.

But even though your top candidates have decades of experience in esteemed organizations, you still have a persistent worry: “did I find everything I possibly could in the vetting process?”

Your clients depend on you to make sure the candidates you offer are a good fit.

Even when an executive has a seemingly pristine track record and has been in the business for years, these features alone don’t prove they’re beyond reproach. Senior-level search requirements are different, and the stakes are exponentially higher.

Consider what happens to your credibility and ultimate business outcomes if:

  • You’re giving an on-site or remote live presentation to a client about the shortlisted candidates you’ve chosen to have them consider. Suddenly, someone in your audience who has googled one of the candidates asks you, “Hey, what do you know about the scandal?”
  • You’ve given someone a glowing recommendation, only to hear on the news shortly after they’re hired that they’ve said or done something inexcusable. Worse, you or your client later discover that what the new hire said or did wasn’t an isolated event.
  • You’ve issued a press release announcing a new hire. Within hours, someone outside the organization digs up and exposes their racially insensitive diatribes. By the time you hear about it, there are 14K retweets and three news outlets are broadcasting the story.

How can you honor your performance guarantee?

Having a performance guarantee, performance retainer, or a new search agreement as part of your search contract is a great safety net. But it can still be prohibitively expensive if your initial placement doesn’t work out. Even if you keep the contract and return to searching for another candidate, the time and resources it will take to conduct new searches can be immense.

Given the current landscape, where searchable offenses are easier to broadcast and there’s more data to review, it’s crucial to go beyond retroactive guarantees to make sure your guarantee holds up. You simply don’t know what you don’t know, and that’s a headache you don’t need and a worry you shouldn’t have to bear.

Fama can help you mitigate against the fear of not catching everything. Using the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning, we offer the breadth of data and the nuance of analysis to gauge a candidate’s fit without the time and cost involved in most executive searches today.