The Year in Review: Our Top 15 of 2015

2015 blueAs 2015 comes to an end, it is worth taking a look back at the insight, knowledge, and advice shared by our contributors this past year. The items below highlight some of the best resources and articles from our own thought leaders and were the most viewed on Witt & Wisdom.

And the top 15 are . . .

Career Advice

  • Career Best Practices: Do You Really Want That New Job?


Recruiting Life Sciences Executives: Three CEO Archetypes

By Morten Nielsen

No two life sciences companies follow the same path of growth and development, but they often do go through similar phases as they transition over years from inception to commercialization. The same CEO is rarely equipped to run a drug, device, or diagnostic company from beginning to end, as leadership needs evolve at the same rate as the growing enterprise.

Therefore, different CEOs are often needed to optimize the different phases of growth. There can be many phases…



Healthcare Executive Recruiting: Myths about the Hire-ability of Military Medical Officers

By Kimberly Smith, FACHE, Senior Partner

For military officers, the decision as to when to transition into civilian life is tough to say the least. Family, logistics, raw emotion, and trepidation about the unknown come into play. If you’ve been a soldier for 10, 20, or even 30 years, it’s hard to leave the ranks.

But most officers, at some point, exit the services for civilian roles — they want something different for themselves or their families, or have reached a…



Do Values Still Matter in Recruiting Healthcare Executives?

By Donna Padilla

“Leadership selection has a greater impact on an organization than any other single activity,” wrote ethicist and theologian John “Jack” Glaser in 1989. Dr. Glaser, who passed away in 2012, was an icon in Catholic healthcare circles and in the industry in general, and his words still ring true today. As an executive search consultant (who regularly serves major faith-based healthcare systems), I may be a little biased but it is hard to…



A New Breed of College President, a New Way of Recruitment

By Lucy Leske, Managing Partner

College Presidential Search GuideIn a few short years, the dynamics of the presidential search in higher education have changed dramatically. Institutions still seek exceptional leaders with proven academic credentials, credibility, and experience, but only if there is also potential – to be creative and entrepreneurial, for example, and to manage change, risk, and disruption. Oftentimes this means bringing in leaders from outside the academy. The landscape has…



Barden’s Best: Sage Advice for Academic Candidates and Search Committees

The CASE Leadership Summit is in full swing in Chicago, marking one of the social and intellectual highlights of the year for advancement leaders in higher education. A Witt/Kieffer contingent including senior partner Dennis Barden and consultants Zachary Smith and Mercedes Vance will be on hand for the proceedings.

Barden is not only one of our firm’s most experienced search consultants (in advancement…



Severance Practices for College Presidents: Survey Results

By Lucy Leske, Education Practice LeaderMercer Cover

Compensation and benefit packages for college and university presidents attract considerable attention, especially among presidents themselves. While there is plenty of information available on cash compensation for presidents, there is little on severance.

In response, Witt/Kieffer and the global consulting firm Mercer have partnered to conduct a survey of severance practices for the chief executive position (President or Chancellor) among nonprofit colleges and universities…



What to Expect When You’re Expecting a New Healthcare CEO

By Andrew Chastain 

In recruiting healthcare CEOs today, there is usually serious consideration (and consternation) around the question of not just whom to hire, but what this person should do. There are so many things a healthcare CEO can do that organizations must set more realistic expectations about what she or he should do. This doesn’t mean compromising in whom to hire,…



Career Best Practices: Do You Really Want That New Job?

By Nick Giannas, Consultant

Are you sure that you are ready for a new role? For a career change? To move? In almost every search I participate in as an executive recruiter, I encounter candidates who apply for the position without being sure they actually want it. Yes, they are interested in exploring the opportunity, as they usually want the higher salary and…



Where Will Tomorrow’s Children’s Hospital Leaders Come From?

By James U. King III and Christine Mackey-Ross

“We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten.” –Bill Gates

If there were ever a time to make serious plans for the development and transitioning of senior executives at children’s hospitals, it is now. Child health issues ranging from Medicaid reform and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to childhood obesity and pediatric research present major challenges….