Takeaways: Achieving the Best Hiring Outcomes through Talent Assessment

Hunt Scanlon Media’s Private Equity Operating Partners Talent Forum brought together industry leaders to discuss best practices for value creation through talent playbooks that optimize returns.

Keith Giarman, Managing Partner, Global Private Equity Practice, provided insight for the How to Achieve the Best Hiring Outcomes through Talent Assessment panel.

Here are Keith’s key takeaways from the panel for impactful assessment of CEO and CFO candidates:

  • A proper assessment and search process will mean nothing if you don’t have a clear scorecard developed that defines competencies for the role. 
  • There is no silver bullet test or technique that produces a predictive outcome to ensure the successful performance of an incoming executive.
  • It’s critical to have a well-defined system and process with multiple touch points and different assessment approaches to ensure success.
  • Leaders must know when to use which assessments and for what purpose, such as:
    • Use “lightweight” testing early in the search process focused on the cognitive skill and psychometric profile of candidates. This will ensure you develop insights into an individual’s strengths and weaknesses. That can then be probed more thoroughly during the complete interview process. 
    • Use a business case analysis for finalist CEO candidates so you can test modeling and analysis skills with real-world data. Additionally, the business case approach allows you to see how a CFO leads the room and problem-solves working with several key individuals on the team, so it helps to ensure culture and chemistry fit. 
    • Use a more predictive test like DHR’s Leader Lens™ based on the book “Executive Intelligence” written by Justin Menkes, Partner, Leadership Consulting. The tool delves deeper into the social, emotional, and cognitive intelligence that is so critical to ensuring success in the CEO role not only on day one but throughout their tenure in the seat.
Keith Giarman (third from right) shares insights during How to Achieve the Best Hiring Outcomes through Talent Assessment panel alongside industry peers. The PE Operating Partners Talent Forum was held at The Harvard Club in New York.

Hunt Scanlon’s Private Equity Operating Partners Talent Forum and Talent Assessment Panel stressed the importance of having the right talent in place to build organizational value. By properly utilizing executive assessment, private equity operating partners can achieve optimal hiring outcomes, supporting a strong return on investment.

Meet the Expert

Keith Giarman

Managing Partner, Global Private Equity Practice

Keith Giarman serves as Managing Partner of the Private Equity Practice, based out of the San Francisco and New York offices. He is also a member of the firm’s North American Executive Committee driving overall strategy for the organization.

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