Talent Acquisition/ Leadership/ Operations/ Strategic

Secret to Success of the World's Greatest Professional Firms: Recruiting

Secret to Success of the World's Greatest Professional Firms: Recruiting

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Not sure if I'm simply the best or just better than all the rest!Or, at least one of Seven Secrets of Success as this 2013 book by Charles Ellis promises to share. McKinsey, Goldman Sachs, Capital Group, Mayo Clinic and Cravath, Swain & Moore are the firms studied and yes, recruiting excellence was what Charles, not a recruiter, believed and described that they all had in common.

A review of the book in the Economist, Simply the Best, highlighted the following:

  • “Above all, these firms are fanatical about recruiting new employees who are not just the most talented but also the best suited to a particular corporate culture.”
  • “These firms’ bosses spend a disproportionate amount of time on the recruitment process, often putting it before other more immediately lucrative demands on their time.”
  • “Recruitment, these firms believe, is the start of a lifelong relationship. At the same time, Goldman and McKinsey also have a policy of helping their staff to find suitable work elsewhere, all in the expectation that they will eventually become loyal customers.”

We think it helpful to give your CHRO a copy for the holidays as subliminal ‘proof’ that TA is the ‘point of HR’.

And hope they don’t read too far into the highlighted practices the author notes as evidence of their excellence like: “McKinsey interviews 200,000 people each year, but selects just over 1%”, that “Each McKinsey applicant can be interviewed eight times before being offered a job; at Goldman, twice that is not unheard of” and, “at Capital a serious candidate is likely to be seen by 20 people, some more than once”.

Even the best it seems, need to simplify.

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