Thursday, September 4, 2008

The mad talent hunt- Hunted turning Hunters

In the mad hunt for talent, the hunted are turning hunters. In line with global trends, CEOs and other C-level executives from leading companies are joining headhunting firms. MasterCard south Asia GM Nitin Gupta is the most recent high-profile executive to join high-brow search firm Spencer Stuart, according to sources. He is the second C-level executive hired by Spencer Stuart in the past one year, the other being Akhil Verma, the former CFO and COO of mobile value-added services firm MobiApps.
Other senior industry execs who have made the switch in the past few months are former country head of pharma company Guidant, Atul Khanna, who joined Hunt Partners in Bangalore and Grey Worldwide’s former COO Ashutosh Khanna, who joined leading search firm Korn/Ferry in Mumbai some months back. Arjun Shrivastava, the former marketing director of flavoured beverages at PepsiCo Inc, US and Amitabh Sharma, former COO of Active Private Equity, have both joined Egon Zehnder. The move has been led by the attitudinal shift towards headhunting as the profession has become much more visible, respectable and established than it was ten years ago when the first wave of leading headhunters set office in India.
Compensation is no more an issue either. “Partners in leading executive search companies have the potential to get paid similar or more than existing CEO compensations,” says search firm Korn/Ferry country head Deepak Gupta. Unconfirmed reports suggest that some leading partners of exec search firms have received over Rs 2 crore in bonuses during last year. “I know a partner in a search firm who has taken home as much as Rs 3 crore in bonuses last year,” said a source who did not wish to be named. Bonuses in search firms are paid on the basis of successful completion of searches and client satisfaction. A search firm typically charges one-third of the candidate’s annual compensation package as fee, though this can vary according to the firm’s business model. One -third of this fee is then distributed among the firm’s partners as bonus.

*Ref Economic Times

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