For any start-up or spin-out, one of the biggest challenges is the balance between hiring credible and expert people, and getting the investment to pay them. Investors want to back a strong team, not ideas.
Back in the early 1990's, when the internet was still pretty new, the only route for companies to reach out to potential employees was via job advertisements in relevant publications.
With over 20 years' experience, I asked Nicola Gardiner for an insight into finding senior executives for some of Oxfordshire's most exciting businesses.
Many of the clients I work with, in and around Oxford are emerging businesses who are innovating and disrupting their sectors. This certainly creates an exciting journey for the founders, and brings plenty of investment interest, but can present particular challenges when recruiting their key people who will be vital to the success of those businesses.
Recent interviews with Oxfordshire based entrepreneurs and those who support local entrepreneurs, have revealed that the current climate for entrepreneurship in Oxfordshire is; “healthy and more exciting than ever” says David Mott – Partner at Oxford Capital.
Most founders of start-ups work on the basis that they will find the people they need within their own network. That route isn’t always successful, or even the best financially in the longer term. Whilst I am certainly an advocate of having a great network to call upon, sometimes someone you don’t already know is the better hire.
This insight into the Boardroom’s of Oxfordshire is the result of a series of discussions we had in 2013 with the CEO’s and MD’s from a cross-section of Oxfordshire’s most exciting businesses.
Unlike in London, the headhunting industry in Oxford is populated by a small number of niche firms, and perhaps because of this, there is often some confusion as to the difference between a search assignment and a recruitment exercise.