4 Tricks of the Trade a Top Executive Search Consultant Doesn’t want you to Know

Executive search, in general, is a much higher level of service than your average recruitment process. Its focus, thoroughness and complexity is aligned to the significant level of investment involved in recruiting high calibre, senior and executive roles. Here at Collingwood, we aim to go beyond what is expected from an executive search company for every client. Our extensive experience, passion and determination to achieve success for our clients has allowed us to develop some tricks of the trade to help us find the best person for you.

Research is fundamental and the key to a successful executive search project. Our market insights enable our consultants to find the best candidates for our clients, focusing our research to really understand our client, the role, the industry sector and the pool of target candidates. Our process includes thorough industry intelligence and research to not only discover who our client is and what they are all about but also their industry competitors. We also offer talent pipelining services, a process of mapping and understanding an industry's talent landscape.

Consultative approach
To really excel within executive search, a consultative process is paramount. To us, this means becoming fully immersed in our clients’ company cultures, becoming their trusted advisor, being passionate about their challenges and dreams and striving to achieve success together.

Our approach is all about proposing data backed solutions, working together to understand obstacles and working creatively to remove them. We become an extension of our clients, carrying out employee benchmarking to ensure we really understand their superstars. This is invaluable when assessing potential new employees. This approach is a long term one through which we have worked with many of our clients for over 10 years.

Body language
Understanding body language is one trick of the trade that can’t be missed out of this blog post. We pride ourselves in investing time to meet with potential candidates face-to-face, wherever they are located in the UK or internationally, for the very reason that we can gain a better understanding of them. Seeing the whites of someone’s eyes and “pressing the flesh” cannot be substituted if you really want to get under an individual’s skin. By reading body language, we can assess how suitable a candidate is for a role, whether they will integrate well to our client’s culture as well as understanding their confidence in their own abilities.

Building relationships
Building strong relationships with our clients is a given but much of our success comes from the journey we provide to our candidates. Collingwood is a values-based business and so our goal is to put candidates and clients together who share the same vision, values and objectives. Appointing a senior executive is a significant investment for both parties; for the client because the success of their business relies on getting the recruitment right and for the candidate because the move has to align with their career goals.


Being a successful executive search consultant means going above and beyond what’s expected. These ‘tricks of the trade’ aren’t really tricks at all, but proven, thought out processes driven by a passion for our work.

Contact us today to see how we go beyond what is expected from an executive search company or download our ‘how to brief an executive search partner’ ebook to ensure you are getting the most out of these tricks of the trade.