EDUCATION

Madison MacArthur Executive Search - Education Assignments

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Chief Executive Officer

Organization
Major Public Sector Union

Situation
Our client, a major public sector union, was going through a difficult and very public round of bargaining with the government.  At the same time, the CEO – the most senior full-time employee, reporting into the elected executive officers - announced his retirement.

Assessment
The client required that the candidate have a rare combination of executive leadership and management skills, while at the same time being experienced with, and committed to, union-side labour relations.   They would be taking over from a deeply respected and much-loved predecessor, who had been largely responsible for building the organization to a position of strength as well as national, and international prominence.  At the same time, they would lead the organization through a period of significant change, both from a governance and an operational standpoint. 

Challenge
The client required that the candidate have a rare combination of executive leadership and management skills, while at the same time being experienced with, and committed to, union-side labour relations.   They would be taking over from a deeply respected and much-loved predecessor, who had been largely responsible for building the organization to a position of strength as well as national, and international prominence.  At the same time, they would lead the organization through a period of significant change, both from a governance and an operational standpoint. 

Solution
The Lead Consultant on this project identified virtually every senior executive within the union sector in Canada, as well as a number of consultants and legal professionals who had built careers providing professional and operational expertise to these organizations. He also made it a priority to identify and reach out to candidates from designated groups from an employment equity standpoint. The organization is one which is staunchly committed to pro-active equity hiring, and it was very important that the short-list include candidates that reflected the gender, ethnic and racial make-up of the member base. Through this research Madison MacArthur sourced and interviewed a range of candidates from across  the country. Just as importantly, the consultants worked closely with the elected executive officers (the board), to help them understand the backgrounds, strengths and weaknesses or all of the shortlisted candidates.  This consultation process took place over the course of several meetings with the entire executive.            

Candidate
The successful candidate was recruited from the ranks of professionals providing advice and service to the union movement. Her professional career had also provided her with significant management experience within her own firm, including leadership of major change initiatives. The lead consultant was instrumental in assisting the organization’s Chair in negotiating an employment agreement with the successful candidate.

Postmortem
The new CEO is now several months into the role, and making a good transition. Feedback from the Chair is that she has hit the ground running.

Footnote
Madison MacArthur continues to enjoy a close working relationship with this client company and was soon engaged on a new assignment.