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Past successes are no guarantee for the future

Loyal readers will recognise this particular bugbear of mine.

Past successes are no guarantee for the future!

How often have I encountered, and continue to encounter, this persistent misunderstanding in my search practice...

If only it were as simple as looking forward rather than backwards... Organisations all too often stubbornly select based on straightforward, rigid criteria drawn from a candidate's past.

Admittedly, the alternative is far from simple. And the widely used tests seldom provide the needed reliability.

Read this article by Bersin & Chamorro-Premuzic. It poses three questions. First: does the candidate have the skills to be a high-performing contributor or the skills to be an effective leader? Second: can I really trust this candidate’s individual performance measures? Finally: am I looking forward or backward?

Truly, it is worth the time, effort, and exertion to analyse both the role and the candidates more deeply. To understand them. In context. With an appreciation of history. With the creativity that brings a clear vision of the desired outcome into focus. The future!

You are welcome to discuss how to minimise the chances of a leadership appointment failing to deliver what is expected and hoped for.

Warm regards,



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