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There are times in business when ‘no’ ultimately means ‘yes’. More times than one might imagine, in fact. Particularly when it comes to hiring people who don’t tick all the boxes on the job spec.

The job spec itself requires a case study all on its own. But, to summarise, these documents are frequently outdated, are often formulated without taking account of the vision and direction of where the organisation or business unit is heading NOW and, therefore, cannot always be relied on as an accurate benchmark for selecting talented leaders.

Which is what happened when we introduced a top notch Marketing Director to a multinational FMCG company, who had been looking to fill this role for months.

‘We’re just not finding great people’, we had been told.

So we did our thing, found a great person, and introduced him to the hiring team.

‘No’, they said. ‘He’s overqualified and earning too much’, we were told.

Fortunately, the Jack Hammer consultant was not particularly good at doing as she was told. And so she pushed harder to have the hiring team meet with the Marketing Director. She knew he was top quality, and she was convinced that once they met with him, they’d know it too.

And, she was right.

The interview took place. Then another, and another. (And a whole lot more – the interview process took seven months to conclude, and took place in several countries all over the world).

The Marketing Director was eventually appointed.

One year later, he was promoted to Managing Director: SA.

No need to elaborate on the moral of this particular story.

Too Many Cooks

Too Many Cooks

The Brief When we take on the task of finding a great leader for a client, we know there will be more than one party involved. In this ... read more

‘No Hire – He’s Overqualified’!

‘No Hire – He’s Overqualified’!

There are times in business when ‘no’ ultimately means ‘yes’. More times than one might imagine, in fact. Particularly when it comes to read more

Searching for Great Clients is Sometimes Muddy Business

Searching for Great Clients is Sometimes Muddy Business

The Brief We are occasionally approached by potential clients who leave us wondering whether we actually want to partner with them or ... read more

Sourcing Executives in Africa – It Gets Tough

Sourcing Executives in Africa – It Gets Tough

The Brief We were mandated by our global financial services client to source an MD for their insurance subsidiary in Mozambique. Sounds read more

Searching for Leaders – Sometimes You Get More Than You Expect!

Searching for Leaders – Sometimes You Get More Than You Expect!

The Brief We support a major FMCG and food processing business with searching for leaders and BEE talent acquisition. Operating in a ... read more

Innovation Meets Desperation in the Search for IT skills

Innovation Meets Desperation in the Search for IT skills

The Brief The roll out of new banking products and services that our retail banking client had ambitiously planned, was dependent on ... read more

The Tale of Taming a Treasurer (or Two)

The Tale of Taming a Treasurer (or Two)

The Brief Our client, headquartered in Singapore, is Asia’s leading agribusiness group. Ranked amongst the largest listed companies on ... read more

It’s Never a Walk in the Park

It’s Never a Walk in the Park

The Brief Who wouldn’t want to work for one of the top global reinsurers operating in more than 25 countries globally? The South ... read more

Big Fish, Small Pond

Big Fish, Small Pond

The Brief Take an industry leader in the fish and seafood market exporting 70% of their goods to Europe from Southern Africa. Add a ... read more

Will We Find a Black CIO?

Will We Find a Black CIO?

The Brief Our client, a listed Top 40 retailer, was starting to think about a succession plan for their executive team. In particular, ... read more

Internal vs External Appointment?

Internal vs External Appointment?

The Brief The big dilemma for our client: should they appoint someone internally or externally to a key role? They wanted sight of the ... read more

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