Rosman Hosting IESF’s Regional European Conference in Timisoara

On April 18th and 19th, ROSMAN had the pleasure of hosting IESF’s (International Executive Search Federation) Regional European Conference in Timisoara.

The highlight of the conference was the business event – Humans & Technology in the Age of Innovation – organized in the afternoon of April 19th by ROSMAN Talent Solution, the exclusive IESF partner in Romania. Along with the participation of the European members of IESF and Normand Lebeau, IESF’s Global President from Canada, the event reunited over 100 human resources managers and executives from international companies located in Timisoara area and representatives of local consulates, universities and lawfirms.

Topics like the impact of the Artificial Intelligence on human resources, new technological trends in the recruitment and selection process, new European regulations in the field of data protection (GDPR) or the blockchain technology and its disruption power in different industries, were presented by seven top speakers, all part of ROSMAN Talent Solution’s network of business partners and associates.

The quality and novelty of the topics presented and the enthusiastic interaction of the participants were strong indicators the event was a real success.

This Regional Conference prepares the Annual General Meeting to be held next September in Lyon with our French partner, Hommes and Entreprises International.



Robin Toft, CEO and Founder of Toft Group, Named 2017 Business Woman of the Year by San Diego Business Journal

SAN DIEGONov. 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Executive search firm Toft Group today announced that its CEO, president and founder, Robin Toft, has been selected as a 2017 Business Woman of the Year in the small business category by the San Diego Business Journal (SDBJ).

The annual Business Women of the Year program recognizes women business leaders who are making a difference in their workplaces and communities. Nominees were evaluated based on their innovation, entrepreneurship, professional accomplishment and community leadership.

San Diego is home to many smart, highly successful and community focused small business owners, who happen to be women, so it is truly an honor to be selected for this award,” said Ms. Toft. “I’m incredibly proud of our team at Toft Group whose dedication is critical to the success of the company, and I want to thank each of them for their tireless work that has enabled Toft Group’s incredible growth and success.”

Toft Group, a global executive search firm fully devoted to life sciences, has an extensive track record of quickly filling highly specialized leadership roles while ensuring a strong cultural fit. Searches are completed efficiently and effectively, translating to time and cost savings for clients. Notably, nearly 60 percent of placed candidates are identified within two weeks of search initiation — results which are made possible by the company’s commitment to dedicated timelines, strong referral network and highly experienced search consultants.

In addition to Toft Group’s proven ability to help companies build strong, successful teams, Ms. Toft is committed to giving back to the San Diego community. She served on four non-profit boards in 2016, including the Go Red for Women movement of the American Heart Association, the Cancer Foundation at Scripps Mercy Hospital, the leadership organization LEAD San Diego, and the Clearity Foundation, which helps women with ovarian cancer obtain molecular profiling of their tumors and access to clinical trials. Additionally, in 2017, Ms. Toft formed the Women Executive Career Advancement Network (WE CAN) to enable leading executive women to mentor, bond, and inspire each other in their life sciences careers. She has also been a top fundraiser and dedicated walker in the San Diego Susan G. Komen 3-Day / 60 mile walk to support breast cancer research and early detection every year since Toft Group opened in San Diego in 2010.

About Toft Group

Toft Group is a global executive search firm fully devoted to life sciences and healthcare, with a focus on innovation-driven companies at the intersection of biotech and high tech. Toft Group’s targeted, accurate searches translate into exceptional return-on-investment for clients nationwide, and the team’s extensive networks enable the presentation of more highly qualified and diverse candidates than clients would otherwise see. The firm’s extensive track record has shown its ability to quickly fill highly specialized leadership roles where talent is limited. The company has offices in the three major U.S. biotech hubs: San DiegoSan Francisco and Boston. Visit thetoftgroup.com to learn more.

SOURCE Toft Group

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IESF Annual General Meeting in Sydney, Australia!

PRESS RELEASE, for immediate release

Montreal, the 25th of October 2017,

From September 18th to the 21st, the International Executive Search Federation (IESF) held its 15th annual AGM in Sydney, Australia.

Country managers from over 20 countries travelled to the capital of New South Wales for 4 days of discussions on strategic development of the brand, international partner development strategies and training sessions by speakers from all walks of the business and academic community.

‘‘We are particularly proud of the fact that the cross-border business volume grew by more than 204% of the past year.’’, said Normand Lebeau, Global President of IESF and Mandrake’s President. ‘‘Our business performances were quite robust in Eastern Europe as well as in Asia.’’, Mr. Lebeau concluded.

The partners also decided in Sydney that the next European Conference will be held in April 2018, in Timisoara, Romania and that the AGM will be held in Lyon, France, in September of the same year.


International Executive Search Recruitment 

Founded in 2002 in Hong-Kong, IESF is now part of the select club of the 15 most important global executive search associations identifying talent and leadership with more than 136 consultants represented in more than 50 offices around the world.










Finding Directors That Add Value To Growth-Stage Companies

A highly effective board makes a key contribution to the success of the business, and this is particularly true for growth-stage companies. Assembling the right group of board directors can be a challenging task.

Board members can be invaluable resources who provide advice, knowledge, and access to their networks. Unfortunately, not all board members offer this. For example, some directors promote the interests of the investors or founders they represent far above those of the business.

Also, do avoid the five types of dysfunctional board member defined by Jack and Suzy Welch: The Do-Nothing, The White Flag (always avoids confrontation) The Cabalist (focused on personal agenda) The Meddler (constantly preoccupied with details) and The Pontificator.

In early-stage companies, board members should assist the management without becoming involved in operations, through advising on product strategy or providing introductions to new customers, partners, or recruits. They can also act as mentors to the CEO or other members of the management team.  More established businesses may need support related to increasing sales, scaling manufacturing and other areas.

Avoid creating a board that is too homogeneous and form a diverse team, compiled of varied profiles.

Board members need to be fully committed. They’ll attend all your board meetings, come to your events, and go to meetings with you and on your behalf. They’ll put in whatever time is necessary.

You need to appoint directors that speak their minds, who are not afraid to raise a difficult topic during a meeting, even if it relates to someone in the room. They should have plenty of ideas: some directors soon run out of steam with their advice. While they may make an impressive start, after a while they have nothing new to add. Board members should be able to draw on extensive experience and offer practical advice to the evolving growth -stage company.

Capable directors are focused on strategy, they are not operationally involved: they must be strategically engaged and understand the fundamental drivers of the business-markets, competition, technology, finance etc.

Ensure your board member is well-connected in that he/she has a large network, and is willing to leverage it. Finding and securing partnerships for growth-stage businesses, especially when you’re trying to form a link with a much larger company, can be helped by utilising board relationships.

The strong candidate understands that the board’s role is to represent all stakeholders. As outside board members join the board, they have a responsibility to consider the needs of investors, employees, customers and other stakeholders.

Ideal candidates for growth-stage companies are C level executives who have been part of a company that has increased from £5M in revenue to £50m or more with growing profits. The ability to share the lessons learned from the growth path is invaluable. These individuals are typically hard to attract, so an effective recruitment process is needed.

In addition to growth experience, candidates should preferably have sector experience. Recruiting directors who are respected in a company’s sector helps the perception of the company as an industry leader.

While there is no specific method of defining a successful board member, they will “fit” with the company culture and with the CEO and other directors. They will also be able to speak credibly on the board and company’s behalf with customer prospects and management talent.

Relationship difficulties can have a detrimental effect on the board. For example, board members who become involved in day-to-day decisions can inhibit the CEO’s ability to lead. Furthermore, overly assertive directors can cause CEOs to commit to unrealistic plans. While CEOs are responsible for their own decisions, they can still be unduly pressurised, especially when the board member is an investor (whom an inexperienced CEO may feel obliged to defer to). Finally, some board members may be professionally and technically capable, but are unwilling to mentor, nor can they successfully get on with other members, or become part of the team.

To find new board members you should tap into the current directors; ask them to suggest candidates, look to existing customer companies, utilise your partner network or choose an executive search firm with experience in this area.

Most entrepreneurs are highly individualistic, and their individualism drives their business. To grow the company successfully, they must also have the expertise, experience, strategic overview, and connections of an effective board of directors.

About the Author 

Robert Kilpatrick is Managing Director of Kilpatrick, an international executive search consultancy specialising in industry and life science, finding exceptional business and technical leaders.

Robert Kilpatrick, Kilpatrick


IESF provides global access to expertise

In summer 2016, CONSORT Group representing IESF in Russia and CIS countries, encountered a situation rare for the Russian market: our client, an international pharmaceutical company, was involved in negotiating with our candidate – who would soon fill a key position – as to how to compensate the yet unpaid annual bonus from his current employer and include a relevant clause into an employment contract.

The search itself did not last long but the negotiations with the finalist took months. While the candidate found by CONSORT by direct search was interested in professional challenges, the level of responsibility and remuneration offered by the new job, he was anxious that leaving the current employer right now would deny him receiving the annual bonus. Our client, in turn, was not ready to accept the candidate’s proposal to start in his role only after the bonus was paid.

As the practice of paying welcome (signing) bonuses has been nearly non-existent in Russia, we sought advice from our global partners in the International Executive Search Federation (IESF), and in less than twenty-four hours we had responses from all over the world. Backed by the shared international experience, we worked out an optimal solution acceptable both to the candidate and the employing company. This solution envisaged calculating ‘lost profit’ pro rata to the time the candidate would not work for the previous employer, and paying the signing bonus in installments after the probation period was over.

Thus, professional assistance from the IESF colleagues has helped us fill a complex job role and provide a useful service to our long-time client.

Contributed by IESF Russia


Character is key in leadership hires across the globe

IESF hosts its 15th Annual Global Meeting

Cleveland, Ohio — The International Executive Search Federation (IESF) gathered 28 partners and consultants from 22 countries in September in Cleveland, Ohio.

Duriniesf-cleveland-0081g a panel discussion at this annual gathering, the group explored the topic of character, chemistry and functional skills being the three key criteria that C-suite leaders look for when hiring leaders.  Three CEO/President panelists represented US-based manufacturers with production operations in multiple global locations. Identifying, delivering and onboarding senior management hires for overseas operations – particularly in emerging economies such as China and India – are delicate and deliberate projects, the panelists agreed.  As a result, the most effective interview processes must move beyond results-oriented topics in conversations in order to identify the character-driven motivations and methods by which the candidates’ successful track records were achieved. Character impacts the bottom line, and a hiring misstep can become a major set-back for a company and impact productivity, PR and employee morale, the executives added.
Joining the three company executives on the panel were three IESF members – Normand Lebeau, (Mandrake, Montreal); Mark Geary (Asianet Consultants, Hong Kong); and Vivek Ahuja (Confiar Global, India).

iesf-cleveland-0036The group also participated in a keynote presentation by Bob Beaudine, President and CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, and author of The Power of WHO!  Beaudine challenged the group to discern, nurture and consider the natural relationships in their personal and professional lives. Leaders will find they often have key people who will help them succeed right in their own network, but those opportunities are missed without richer, authentic connections.

iesf-cleveland-3341During the conference, the President’s Achievement award was presented to Victor Carulla from Spain and Lennie Chadillon from Canada for their sustained contribution and support.  In addition, three firms, Mandrake (Canada), Topos (Germany) and Kishurim (Israel), received awards for completing the highest volume of cross border assignments.

iesf-cleveland-9955The three-day IESF conference was organized in Cleveland, Ohio by Tim Smith, principal of ASLON.  The group announced its next general meeting will be in Sydney, Australia in September 2017.


Peggy Zand, ASLON


Character is One Key In Cross-Border Leadership Hires

Character, chemistry and cultural sensitivity are key criteria that C-suite leaders look for when identifying and onboarding leaders at their global operations. This is the conclusion of CEOs and international search executives who met recently in Cleveland at the annual meeting of the International Executive Search Federation (IESF), hosted recently by ASLON Group.

Formed in 2002, the IESF includes member firms from North and South America, Europe, Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa. The group operates 80 local offices in 22 countries.

“Identifying and onboarding senior management hires for overseas operations – particularly in emerging economies such as China and India – are delicate and deliberate projects,” said ASLON’s Tim Smith, who helped organize the conference.

Character Impacts the Bottom Line

CEOs in attendance, each from U.S.-based manufacturers with production operations in overseas locations, suggested that in order to understand the character, chemistry and cultural sensitivity of finalist candidates, the most effective interview processes often include extra time spent in social situations, including with spouses, and moving beyond results-oriented topics in interviews in order to identify the character-driven motivations and methods by which the candidates’ successful track records were achieved.

“There is a clear consensus thsymposiumat character impacts the bottom line,” Mr. Smith said. “And a hiring misstep can become a major set-back for a company and impact productivity, PR and employee morale.”

“Our successful overseas placements have had one major aspect in common — adaptability,” said Normand Lebeau of Mandrake, Montreal. “Adaptability is found in communication skills, leadership style, and personality traits.” The most basic element of adaptability is mastery of the local language, he said, “and a willingness to understand country norms and values and blend those over time with the culture and goals of the parent company.” It’s a significant challenge, he noted, requiring a unique set of interpersonal and management skills.

“One should not underestimate the importance of the life partner in the adaptability equation,” he added. “A high degree of willingness to adapt is an important quality for the spouse and family in successful and sustained placements,” said Mr. Lebeau.   

The Value of Authenticity

“Character is authenticity,” he said. “No leader is effective if he or she is not considered authentic. The effective leader will inspire people to follow him or her and tnormand-lebeauhat leader must understand the culture of the organization in order to be effective. Any leader, no matter how good they think they are, will not get to first base if they are perceived as not authentic or lacking character.”

Mark Geary, of Asianet International in Hong Kong, indicated that Western, Chinese and Indian companies all now seem to have similar requirements for talent acquisition. “Their customer bases and manufacturing operations are international and they are therefore  seeking candidates who have acquired international experience, can multi-task and have the necessary sensitivities to operate in multicultural environments.”   

Vivek Ahuja of Confiar Global in India noted that the qualities of leaders are universal and global. “Having said that, when international companies hire in developing countries they have much at risk. Huge investments have to be protected, and return on investments have to be ensured.” Therefore, dynamic leaders with strong integrity, character, technical skills, proven track record and maturity are required.

Both China and India have become major players on the international scene in two ways,” said Mr. Geary. “First, major companies from the U.S. and Europe are establishing R & D as well as manufacturing operations in China and India. At the same time, large indigenous companies now operate in global markets either in their own name or by acquisition, i.e. Tata, Infosys, Reliance, Lenovo, ICBC, Huawei, Alibaba and Tsingtao. Both China and India have populations in excess of one billion, making them geographically and culturally diverse in themselves.”

Mr. Ahuja noted that 50 percent of India’s population of 1.3 billion is less than 25 years of age. “No other country can boast such a big talent pool of literate, English-speaking young and energetic youth. The vast talent pool available in this country has attracted foreign direct investment (FDI) of $40 billion in 2015-2016.”

Apple, Panasonic, Microsoft, Amazon, Honeywell are some of the companies which have put greater emphasis on talent in India, and have invested huge amounts and have hired thousands of workers and leaders, Mr. Ahuja said.

Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media

October 12, 2016 


The 5 Career Management Mistakes that will KILL Your Promotion

A shocking 70% of managers worldwide never reach their full potential. While there are endless reasons for such factors affecting career development, most managers seem to make 5 common mistakes. Here are the top 5 mistakes made by managers who fail to advance in their career. Commit these and ensure that you’ll fail, too.

1. Keep doing nothing.

One of the most damaging factors affecting career development is doing nothing. First of all, it’s easier to sit back and let things take their course. But you might actually think that by doing nothing, you are doing the right thing. For example, you might think you’re demonstrating trust in the “natural” promotion process in your organization – or showing respect to your managers, who obviously know better.

Remedy: remove the wool from your eyes and start getting into active mode.

2. Drown in honey.

I’ve been using this colorful expression for decades to describe the situation in which managers find themselves paralyzed by the compliments they receive from their bosses. The sticky, sweet, gold stuff is poured on you so often in the form of positive feedback that you begin to lose sight of what really good performance is – so much that you inevitably “lose your edge” and are objectively no longer suitable for promotion.

Remedy: remember that compliments are good, but don’t let them go to your head.

              Results are what matter.

3. Be like everyone else.

There’s an old Japanese saying: “The nail that sticks out gets hammered down.” Your organization might value this proverb, especially in the age of company credos, corporate values, cross-functional teamwork, and standardization. However, if you hammer yourself down by downplaying what makes you unique, there won’t be any reason for you to be promoted over others.

Remedy: be a team player, but don’t miss opportunities to show what you’ve got.

4. Wing internal interviews.

You’ve been eyeing an open position in your organization and are sure that you’re the perfect candidate. You even know the decisionmakers well and are fairly certain that they are familiar with your qualifications. You certainly have the job in the bag, at least compared to any outside candidates. They’re brought in just for formality, right? Wrong. Your company is really looking for the best candidate possible, which, surprise, may not be you. Not if you don’t prepare. As strange as it seems, internal interviewing can be more grueling than interviewing for positions outside of your organization, especially because so much is already known about you. Failing to prepare yourself for an internal interview will surely lead to disappointment.

Remedy: keep in mind that being promoted isn’t a given; competition can be tougher than applying for a position in another organization.

5. Avoid the mirror.

When you fail to look into the mirror, you never see yourself. More importantly, you don’t see how others perceive you. A good look into the mirror will always reveal your strengths and weaknesses as seen by others. A good look into the mirror will help you understand the differences between how you want to be seen and how you are really seen – thus highlighting the things that need to be changed. Keeping yourself away from the mirror is a surefire way to remain stagnant in your career.

Remedy: acknowledge that when it comes to promotion, it doesn’t matter how you see yourself – only how others see you.

And always remember:

Great managers are made. Not born.


3 things you must know to sustain career success

A whopping 72% of successful managers don’t achieve their career dreams – despite all of what they have going for them!

And here’s the kicker: it’s because of their success that they don’t get promoted!

Sounds strange? I’ll explain why.

But first a few words about how to measure success at work. Despite what we might think about being successful, one thing is for sure: success depends on circumstances. What makes you successful in one situation might make you unsuccessful in another. So a successful manager is really just enjoying a temporary place in the limelight – which will fade away at some point.

Here’s an example:

Let’s take Fred, a super-successful manager when it comes to motivating and mobilizing teams. He’s not only effective at bringing folks together, he’s one of the most admired managers as well – so much that his team is willing to go all out for him at a moment’s notice. By all measures of how to measure success at work, a manager like Fred would be one of the first considered for promotion right?

Not so fast. You know the saying: “Every coin has two sides”. On one hand, Fred is a wizard at handling teams. But on the other, spending too much time on nurturing teams often leads to a slowdown in decisionmaking – and even indecisiveness.

The moral of the lesson here is as follows: success is always determined under a specific set of circumstances. Change the role (or the expectations of the role) and you change the definition of “success”. Most managers are always surprised by this.

But back to Frank. While Frank was sure he was the next one up for promotion, he found himself being passed up. Beyond the disappointment and frustration Frank surely felt, there’s a huge question mark: Why? How can such a successful manager such as Frank, who’s even emulated by others, not have gotten the promotion?

This is one of the first questions that many managers have asked me over the years. And the next thing they say to me is usually something to the tune of, “I’m successful on almost all measures and highly valued by my company. Why didn’t I get that last promotion?” What went wrong?

Knowing what went wrong can certainly help you understand what you need to do to avoid this next time – but mostly will deepen your understanding of what it means to be a successful manager.

Like everyone, you were taught that to get ahead in your career, you’ve got to be good – or even excellent – at what you do. And so this is what you’ve been working towards your whole career – paving the path to the top, bit-by-bit. It’s important to note that no one steered you wrong on this one. Excelling at your job is essential for becoming the type of manager your organization would consider for future promotions. But, as we’ve seen with Fred, it’s still not enough…Here are the top 3 reasons why:

1.    What you’ve got is not necessarily what it takes.

In your current role, you haven’t actively developed the competencies needed for a more senior role.  And it doesn’t end here. Sometimes the skills and talents you’ve been growing all along are the very ones that might be blocking your success.

2.    You’re walking the plank.

You think that the way to get ahead is by excelling at your current position, rather than developing new competencies. So you harness all of your motivation and march forward, without taking into consideration that you should be looking left, right, or even ahead!

3. You haven’t been listening.

All caught up in the aura of your achievements, you’ve been ignoring the bits of constructive feedback you’ve been receiving all along the way. If you think back, you’ll note that these valuable tidbits could’ve helped you get that next promotion.

Do any of these sound familiar? If so, it’s not the end of the world (or your career). What’s important is that from now on, you work on preventing these situation so that you can achieve the promotion you deserve.

In the next few posts, I’ll be showing you exactly how to take your career destiny into your own hands.

And always remember:

Great managers are made. Not born.

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