➢ Small Firm Access to Executives

Do boutique firms have the same access to executives as large, well-known search firms?  Will executives return a call to a firm that may be unknown to them?

The simple answer is that if a recruiter calls with a position of interest, because a retained recruiter has exclusivity on that position, the executive can access the position only through that recruiter, so will return the call, regardless of whether he knows the firm.

That’s the short answer, and one of the reasons that 70% of US search assignments go to boutique firms.  Are there exceptions, instances where the large firm has advantage?  Sure there are, in cases where an assistant screens an executive’s voice and emails (typically at the very highest levels).  Under those circumstances it’s anyone’s guess which information actually gets to the executive.   And I’m sure there are people who are swayed by the big search brand, but it all still comes down to the position at hand and its attractiveness to the executive.

Being a known commodity to the people you are attempting to attract is helpful certainly.  Hence our narrow practice specialty.   At the same time executives appreciate dealing with a partner from the outset, as is nearly always the case with small firms.