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Remote Working is back……

March 23rd. “You must stay at home”. Boris ordered what the smarter people and smarter workplaces had implemented a week or two earlier. “Work from home if at all possible”. Everyone, from contact centre staff to the top executives had to forgo their offices and work from home. Many believed it would last just a […]

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Virtually Perfect – 20 Tips to Perfect Your Video Call/Interview

Between Social-Distancing, Self-Isolation and increasing Societal Lockdown, traditional meetings have virtually been all been converted to ‘virtual’ in the last two weeks. The UK was well behind the Far East and the US in the proportion of video meetings. In 2019 43% of US business meetings were ‘virtual’ compared with just 7% in the UK. […]

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No office is the new ‘corner office’.

Think of success and office space. The corner office, vista of downtown New York, 40/50/60+ floors up, 500sq ft+, at least one sofa, a huge desk with multiple screens, board table, more cupboard space than a ‘Real Housewife of XXXXXX’ craves in her dressing room and of course the obligatory interior designer and redecoration budget. […]

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First Impressions. 13 tips & why you should look at your feet when meeting someone.

“You have less than 30 seconds to make a first impression”. An old adage that everyone got taught as soon as they were expected to make an impression. Is it right? Or is it 7 seconds like my old school careers guidance counselor repeatedly repeated? (whilst wearing hush-puppies and a corduroy jacket with at least 20 […]

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Hitting the Bar on Transfer Deadline Day

A quick scan through any news channel or Social Media timeline yesterday will highlight that it was Transfer Deadline Day. For a proportion of the population, that meant it was a day filled with constantly reloading sport website pages or even more obsessively, take the day off work to watch Sky Sports. For the remainder, […]

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CV Tips: 20 Things to do…..20 Things to avoid!

Let’s start by blowing a myth away. The 2 page rule is nonsense. Do NOT try and fit 20 years into 2 pages by using font size 4 and margins measured in millimetres. Follow the below rules and your CV will be the perfect length, whether 1 page or 7. Your CV is your Sales Document, […]

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Life’s a Beach: 14 ways to engage your team through summer (before they call me)

I’m lucky enough to have just come back from a sunny, summer holiday. There are a myriad of reasons why holidays/vacations are a good thing. Rest & Recuperation, spending quality time with family, de-stress your daily life, recharge your professional batteries…..few things are more pleasurable than standing in a warm sea, with your child/ren holding […]

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Qualification Vs Experience

Justine Greening was in the press for ‘forcing’ an exam culture on 7yr old kids through “SATS” tests earlier this month, sparking trade-union-esque walk-outs of parents and their children…(walking-out all the way to the local park in the sunshine of last week). The cry was that tests and scoring at this age isn’t important and adds undue […]

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Recruitment and YOUR Digital Footprint

Think back over the last 10 years of your life. Think of the most riotous night out/holiday/party in that time. Think of the best/worst stag-do-hen-party you’ve been on. Think of the photos that were taken on them. How many of those photos do you want your prospective employer to see? Social media has revolutionized a […]

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New Year. £1m of Opportunities.

Despite a politically volatile year, 2016 was a very positive year for Executive Search, and business in general from our indicators. The value of the Global Executive Search market broke through $10bn for the first time ever, at the same time the general recruitment market exceeded $500bn….executive search maintaining the 2% discussed in our Why Recruitment […]

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15 ways to boost Christmas Spirit (and Staff Retention)

Merry Christmas. On some level, everyone loves Christmas. Halcyon memories of childhood, giddiness of our own children….or giddiness of adulthood festive expectation. Or all three. But for employers/business owners there is a lot of fear. We all know that once the Christmas lights go up, productivity levels tend to go down, mirrored, in all probability, […]

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Christmas Spirit: 12 Festive Gins

Last year, I blogged about Why Recruitment Was Like Gin. A tenuous subject, perhaps, but it became the most viewed blog on my site in 2015…aided I am sure by the tasting notes for over 50 of my favourite Gins. The parallels are still there. Both the Recruitment market and the Gin market have seen […]

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Dear America….

We feel your pain. You didn’t get the President many of you wanted. You didn’t get the President most of us wanted you to get. But as President Obama predicted, the sun still rose on Wednesday. It rose again yesterday and today. It will rise again tomorrow. We now see protests, complaints and anger. Don’t […]

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Press Release: Headhunter Pitches to Theo Paphitis and Wins Charity Award!

Gary Chaplin, from Wilmslow, is celebrating after pitching to renowned businessman Theo Paphitis and being crowned winner of the 2016 Many Hands Campaign in support of Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity. The annual Many Hands Campaign, spearheaded for the fourth time by renowned businessman Theo Paphitis, has raised £46,000 from 21 participating companies since its […]

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Social Media in Business – Survey

I blogged two years ago about the value of Social Media in business; specifically MY business. Read it here: What’s Twitter Worth To You?. In short, I valued my Social Media exposure, primarily Twitter, as worth £100,000 to my business in just 6 months. Two years on, Social Media is dominating most business’s sales strategy, […]

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Your Life, Your Career…Your Hands. Lessons from Tony Robbins

“Whether you believe you can do something, or believe you can’t; You are probably right”. It’s a great quote, said by Henry Ford but adopted by 1,000s. It relates to self belief, and specifically, the power of the subconscious mind – both of which are the cornerstone of Neuro-Linguistic Programming. The power of the sub-conscious mind is […]

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Gambling with Murdoch

Take a look at yesterday’s Sunday Times appointments section….or rather, the appointments page, gone are the days when it had its own section. It now struggles to even fill a whole page. And yet, there is still approaching £100,000 worth of advertising contained within that one page, with each advert costing £10-15,000. Amongst them only one quotes […]

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Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot?

Happy New Year! Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot? Ok, it’s a rhetorical question asking if old times should be forgotten and more generally a ‘call-to-remember’ long standing relationships.  As a Head-Hunter, old acquaintances and long-standing relationships are the back bone to my USPs, and my life.  But what of the past? Christmas and New Year is […]

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Competency Based Interviews: What to ask. How to Answer

Competency Based Interviewing is often seen as a dark-art from the mystical world of HR. Or just BullS**t. Truth is, it’s neither. Many of my clients scoff at HR functions that use highly scripted CBI questions, decreeing them as far too fluffy. And they can be right at that. I’m vocal about interview style. My […]

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20 tips to turn your next Video Interview into an Oscar winner

It’s over 50 years ago that JFK defeated Nixon in the first ever, televised presidential debate. JFK won, not just because of what he said, but because he and his team knew how to manage that new medium. He knew that a blue shirt played well on screen, Nixon just wore his standard white and […]

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New Year/New Job? Career Tips & £1m of Job Opportunities

The beginning of 2014 saw unprecedented activity in Executive Search, activity levels which only increased as the year developed. That momentum has carried into 2015, even before it began. We start the year with £1m of live mandates [See list below….Click Job Title for further details]: But first: Peruse our CV Tips; nailing First Impressions at Interview; our guide to Getting Noticed by HeadHunters, and What […]

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CV Tips: 20 Things to do…..20 Things to avoid!

This blog post has been updated and moved here

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The Trouble With (Recruiting) Sales Directors

The below is an interview given to Sales Director Magazine: 1) When head-hunting Sales Directors what things do you look for? People often cite Sales Directors as the most difficult C-Level discipline to interview and recruit for; the argument being that professional sellers are highly adept at controlling interviews and selling their own F.A.B (Features/Advantages/Benefits) […]

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What’s Twitter Worth (to you?)….Spoiler: More than you think!

Twitter is everywhere. Individuals and businesses alike herald it as one of the best engagement/communication/collaboration/information sources around. But what is it worth? And is it worth your time invested? As of today, Twitter is worth $31.3bn, increased from $24bn on IPO last year (but down from $44bn earlier this year). With 271m active monthly users […]

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Recruitment Lessons from The Savoy

We are lucky enough to have just enjoyed a weekend at The Savoy in London, to celebrate my wife’s Birthday. Of all the uber-premium hotels in London, The Savoy ranks high on anyone’s list, especially after a £220m refurbishment ready for it’s 125 year anniversary this year. Coupled with arguably the coolest list of former […]

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Get Serious (or buy a Jester hat)

For weeks on end, for 10 years, millions of TV viewers have watched Simon Cowell and his successors publicly berate dozens and dozens of people, all with a quest to exploit their talent in the name of success. Many people proudly stride onto the X-Factor stage, convinced their talent is world class only to be ripped to shreds and […]

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21 reasons why there is more to Head-Hunting than using LinkedIN

“We’ve decided not to appoint a headhunter, we’re going to have a look on LinkedIN instead.” Possibly the most increasingly common thing I have heard from businesses with a need to recruit in the last year or so.  LinkedIN has, without doubt, revolutionised people’s ability to network and to forcibly expand their own networks of contacts (much as the premise […]

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What to do WHEN you get HeadHunted….

We’ve all been HeadHunted. It’s flattering, but when that all important call comes from a true Corporate HeadHunter…are you ready? This could be a genuinely life changing experience, many of these calls I have made have ended up making the recipient a (multi)millionaire. ….So how do you make sure you are not caught off-guard, pre-screened […]

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Getting Noticed by and Networking with HeadHunters

Would you sell your car and walk home if someone offered you enough money for it? If you wouldn’t, you are unlikely to be commercial in your life, or your career. Same is said for building a relationship with Corporate HeadHunters.  Whether you are actively seeking to add to your own team, actively searching for a […]

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CV Tips: 20 Things to do…..20 Things to avoid!

Let’s start by blowing a myth away. The 2 page rule is nonsense. Do NOT try and fit 20 years into 2 pages by using font size 4 and margins measured in millimetres. Follow the below rules and your CV will be the perfect length, whether 1 page or 7. Your CV is your Sales Document, […]

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Christmas Chemistry Lessons.

We are lucky enough to have just returned from our Christmas break; Four magical days at the venue of our wedding reception, the incomparable and opulent Prestonfield in Edinburgh. The setting could not have been better for an enchanted festive family break to reward for a busy year. A country estate built for the Lord Provost in […]

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An Interview on Interviews

Interview skills are probably the hardest and most underestimated part of the recruitment process. It is the biggest area we have to train our clients, and something everyone thinks they can do…until they are faced with doing it. This is the transcript of a recent interview I did on Interviewing for an Exec Search Publication: […]

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Bale and Able?

Yesterday, Gareth Bale stood proudly in the Santiago Bernabéu stadium wearing his Real Madrid shirt. He showed his ball control skills, until he dropped the ball. But is he the only one? The move has been on the cards for months, and has had universal approval (even from most at White Hart Lane given the […]

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Replacing Fergie

First the shock resignation of Pope Benedict; Then yesterday the announcement of (for some) an even more significant departure of an even bigger spiritual leader. Sir Alex Ferguson. Early yesterday morning when Sir Alex’s retirement was still just a rumour, one of my fellow gym goers commented that he was sure that wasn’t an assignment […]

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Thatcher & Women on Boards

Last week saw the passing of one of the most influential figures in the Women in Business argument, controversial Women’s Libber, Margaret Thatcher. It also saw the stark news that Lord Davies’ Women on Boards agenda was faltering. Thatcher was a self-declared non-feminist, famously stating “The feminists hate me, don’t they? And I don’t blame […]

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Recruiting the best person: Not just a Papal issue

In the last few months, dozens of CEOs of major organisations have ‘resigned’. For most it leads back to the ‘Shareholder Spring’ and Fat Cat revolt of H1 2012. As discussed in Pick on the Big Guys as early as last May, we predicted an ongoing trend in major corporation’s CEOs departing, often with a […]

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Happy New Year!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! New job in your life or new talent in your business, the New Year is a great time to reflect on the old year and make plans for the new. 2012 saw me set up in business, and end the year not only profitable but in better position that the year started […]

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Having Elvis in your Corner.

Picture the scene, 3 nights ago, I’m sat in the ‘Blue Corner’ dressing room, an hour before my Charity White Collar Boxing fight, focussing on my tactics, quietly listening to loud music, trying to pretend that I’m not so nervous I could vomit…..when in walks Elvis. No really, Elvis walked in, carrying a set of […]

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The Risk of Recruiting a Bunch of Bankers?

Sir David Walker started his new job yesterday as Barclays Chairman. Less than 24 hours in, he has already announced he is to clear out a great number of non-exec directors and pave a similar route for execs…. and already he has received great applause for that announcement. Rid the bank of the scourge of […]

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Women in Boardrooms: Supply not Quotas.

Last year, Lord Davies of Abersoch decreed that businesses should have 25% of the seats around the country’s boardrooms occupied by women, and set a target of 2015 for the top 250 businesses in the UK to get there. A year on, how is positive discrimination going? Well, the FTSE-100 now has 16.7% female board […]

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RVP Vs the CEO

Later tonight, Robin Van Persie is likely to make his debut for Manchester United. The move has had universal approval (Emirates Stadium dwellers aside) with even the most critical of opponents secretly wishing their club could have stumped up the cash. The move will cost Man Utd £24m, plus wages of £36m over 4 years, […]

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Priority seating for Pregnant CEOs?

Last week, Yahoo appointed their 5th CEO in 5 years. They have chosen an outstanding candidate. Two degrees in Computer Science from Stanford, glittering, revered career with Google and value backed-up with the fact that at just 37 years old, the new CEOs remuneration will be significantly in excess of $1million per month. As you’d expect, […]

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Replacing Diamond as a “Gilt’s Best Friend”.

“Barclay’s CEO, Bob Diamond, resigns with immediate effect” the Sky News tickertape announced just before 7.30am a week ago today, 3rd July. I was at the gym and the whole place stopped to read the story before gradually nodding with the appearance of a David having finally defeated Goliath.  Over the following few hours, news […]

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Manchester: The True Second City

I’m a Yorkshireman. For those that don’t understand the War of the Roses and the 600 years of subsequent ‘discussion’, it puts in to context the magnitude of what I am about to say. Manchester is kicking a*se. I may be currently heading south away from Manchester at c120mph courtesy of Richard Branson, with my […]

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JFDI (without the risk)

Being reserved is a Great British trait, but is it outdated? And did it ever have a place in business? There is a time and a place to be polite, to be modest, but sometimes you just need to grow a pair. The Americans are great at this. The land of ‘Hell Yeah’ makes our […]

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Things we learn from Men in Lycra

I was lucky enough to be a special guest of the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity at yesterday’s Great Manchester Cycle Ride in recognition for the Charity Bike Ride I did last year, and as their reigning Many Hands Award Winner. The ride was made up of 4 laps of a 13 mile circuit around the […]

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“Stop Whining and Work Harder”

This was Prime Minister David Cameron’s message to business and workers earlier this week. Does he have a point? The opposition jumped on the missive immediately. Arguably the biggest whiner of the House of Commons, Chuka Umunna spoke of little else for the following few days. Perhaps the mantra could be adopted on the opposition benches […]

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Pick on the Big Guy(s)

We’ve currently got four FTSE C-Level searches live; three FTSE-100, one FTSE-250; two CFOs, two CEOs. It’s a great coup, but the stories behind them are also very telling of the market. Last year we saw what was branded as ‘Arab Spring’; the uprising in several ‘Arab’ nations, entire populations typically fighting against tyrant leaders, leading […]

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Question Time: Got Manchester Talking.

I was privileged enough to be a Question Time panel member at yesterday’s inaugural Talk of Manchester event. Great event harnessing just about everything that is great about Manchester….and the North West. The event opened with the perennially incredible, motivational and energetic Michael Finnegan, CEO of i2i – the Peter Kay of business speaking. Michael […]

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What happened to the ‘Job For Life’?

It’s my wedding anniversary today; four years, no time at all in the halls of marriage….. but in career terms, four years is now a well above average tenure. What happened to the ‘job for life’? Times move on, businesses move on and careers have certainly moved on. The average (median) tenure for people’s current jobs […]

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