Leadership Transitions: Handling a Search with a “Hand-Picked” Successor

Recently, Major League Baseball formed a committee to find a successor to current commissioner Bud Selig, who has been at his post 20 years. It appears, however, that Selig already has someone he’d like to see take his place—current MLB COO Rob Manfred. Not all of the league’s owners agree with Selig’s candidate of choice.

The situation piqued the interest of our CEO Charles W.B. Wardell, III…



Building a Foundation for Future Women Leaders

Witt/Kieffer is a strong believer in the need for greater representation of women in leadership positions, and we work with all our clients to provide candidate pools that include capable, proven female leaders. For this reason, we were proud to sponsor a recent “Women in Science” luncheon at Chicago’s Field Museum. The event was aimed at raising funds for female students in scientific fields.

“In almost all the searches we do, clients specifically request a…



Reimagining the Higher Education Presidential Search

By Lucy Leske, Managing Partner, Education Practice

The traditional model of selecting a new college or university president relies upon large, inclusive campus committees which represent a virtual Noah’s Ark of students, faculty, staff, and trustees. While these committees are devoted to their institution’s success, they are often unprepared to apply serious leadership evaluation tools and validate candidate strengths and weaknesses against the organization’s needs and priorities. As…



Can Healthcare CEOs Lead Change, and Change Themselves?

What are healthcare CEOs thinking? It’s a question that many people ask but few know for sure. Two people who know very well are Witt/Kieffer consultant Chris Corwin and Carol Geffner, PhD, principal of Newpoint Healthcare Advisors, who together have been conducting one-on-one interviews with leading hospital and health system CEOs.

What have they learned thus far? For one thing,…



Search Committee Best Practices: Navigating the 10 Stages of a Recruitment

By Michael R. Raddatz, Jr.

During a leadership recruitment, every search committee goes through a process of learning and growth. This is particularly true if the members of the committee don’t know each other well or haven’t had previous experience serving on such a committee. What follows is an overview of sequential stages that search committees can often experience as the recruiting process unfolds. Knowing this typical progression…



Recruiting a Life Sciences CEO: “Never Settle”

Life sciences firms, especially early-stage, high-growth companies, frequently find themselves in a position of needing a new CEO—someone to take them through the next phase of their evolution. While each firm’s trajectory and leadership needs are different, there are established best practices for life sciences firms to find their next CEO. This was the topic of a recent panel discussion sponsored by the PROPEL Center, a nonprofit affiliated with…