President & CEO
Software Development Company
Type: retained executive search
Title: President & CEO
Role: company leader, growth catalyst
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Client: privately-owned Software Development Company
Collaboration: PE Investor/Acting CEO
Completed by: Rick Deare
One of the premier software development operations in the Midwest with a long-standing reputation for deep esoteric knowledge, world-class subject matter expertise, and excellent project delivery capacity. Well capitalized and highly profitable, the company has been recognized as one of the fastest growing businesses in Minneapolis / St. Paul and is positioned for another 2x growth phase.
The full suite of services offered includes software development project services, consulting services, and managed services around deployed project teams. In addition to having scalable on-site and in-house project capabilities, the firm has established an “off-shore” development option for corporate clients.
Key Selection Criteria
– 20+ years of business experience relevant to the software development and/or technology solutions
– 10+ years in technology leadership relevant to software development
– 5+ years of experience in/around solutions selling to IT and business executives in Fortune 500 environments
– 7+ years of P&L / operations oversight as a senior executive leading a business unit, a division or a company exceeding $50 million in revenue
– Full team/company leadership, guidance, team building culture creation and organizational development strategy skills
– Studies business and technology trends, can anticipate opportunities and threats related to innovation and change
– Adaptive, strategic visionary with a history of fully executing growth initiatives
– Marketing and communications savvy
– Innovative, creative problem solver
– MBA required
Having assumed the CEO role shortly after investing in the company, the private equity principal has succeeded in optimizing business operations. The company is highly profitable and its world-class software development capabilities are fully intact. The Acting CEO is now in position to exit the role and bring in a leader with the skills needed to take the company through the 2x growth initiative already underway.
Committed to keeping the operation as lean as practically feasible through the next growth phase, the CEO has determined that his replacement will need to bring strengths in three key areas: deep technology knowledge (including the business of technology), sales and marketing leadership expertise, and experience in P&L company operations management.
The CEO called Rick Deare in for a working session to define the role and discuss the details needed in all aspects of the search and selection process. After the initial meeting, Rick shared an analysis for further discussion, and a search specification which was approved immediately.
The required combination of experience and skill defined a specific cadre of acquisition targets. Given the stakes involved, and the skills aggregate needed, the CEO was concerned about the acquiring the right person for the role. Rick partnered closely and transparently and the two developed an easy working trust that almost tempted the PE Principal to buy a certain search firm.
The labor-intensive, seamlessly partnered search process netted a queue of CEO-caliber people of interest. One, a large company VP of Technology with sales / marketing background and operations acumen, stood front and center. This brilliant, driven, uniquely talented visionary developed a strong interest in the growth-stage CEO experience.
Brilliant hires are not made by search firms. The CEO described in this brief made the hire. He succeeded by virtue of his own skills, the compelling opportunity he had created and the partnership he developed with the individual who would become his partner in a visionary quest. The CEO made a brilliant hire. That hire has become another laudable business success story in the Twin Cities.
C-Suite Sales Leadership Talent
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