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Written by Ru Jupp

Princedale’s Services - Fiercely Proactive Retained Executive Search

Princedale’s Services - Fiercely Proactive Retained Executive Search

Finding the best talent for digital and customer experience leadership

Princedale was founded 10 years ago, in 2012, by me, Ru Jupp, an independent headhunter with over 25 years of experience. Seeing the writing on the wall, I specialised in digital talent in 2008 and I haven't looked back. At Princedale, we specialise in Chief and SVP level executive leadership roles - we find the very best in leadership talent that the world has to offer and are fiercely tenacious.

Our most sought after service is retained executive search. Retained executive search involves entrusting your executive search requirements to us to help define the opportunity then proactively find the right person for your company, culture and the role.


Rigorous processes, proven to work

Our independence means we can be significantly more thorough than many larger firms. Our processes have been honed over 25 years in the business (my career began in London, Tokyo, Barcelona and Hong Kong) taking what works best and discarding the rest. At Princedale, unlike at some bigger firms, what you see is what you get. Just one of the many benefits of choosing to work with an independent search firm is that I personally see to every aspect of the search—ably assisted by my researcher, Lindsay—so you’ll never converse with a senior member of the team to agree your search, to later find that the legwork has been handed to a more junior member.

We put every search in prime position at Princedale, each is as important as the last and we take the same care, with those rigorous processes, with every one. I work on a max of 5 at any one time; we’ve found that is the magic number to maintain our enviable success rate.

Most clients come to us with an old or rough job description. The first thing we do is tear it up. We spend time with the key stakeholders, defining the role, remit and key deliverables, yes, but we’re as interested in defining the person and character that would be the best fit. We discuss the expectations, the challenges and any potential trade-offs (asking the hard questions to ensure clarity and alignment) culminating in a freshly written brief which accurately describes who we’re searching for.

This accuracy and clarity is critical and our clients often comment how refreshing it is that we take the time upfront to get it right.

“The search with Ru and Princedale was easy and straightforward. I really appreciate the personalised service and the regular communication. Ru just got the nuances of the culture of the organisation and understood our leadership profile - critical for any new hire at Hyatt. Princedale presented really great candidates and we’ve just made a great hire from it.”
Eric Brun – SVP Commercial, Hyatt


Mapping the market - without limits

Lindsay Scigliano, Princedale’s Head of Research, gets to work thoroughly mapping every relevant organisation to come up with a long list of top names we want to explore. At this point in the search there are no limits. We draw on our extensive networks across markets and geographies, searching internationally to ensure thoroughness. 

We make discreet enquiries, take references and explore every last avenue to construct our long list of top contenders.

Next, we identify our benchmark candidate. This person is the first dart on the dartboard—a top notch individual from our immediate network.

After I personally look at 200+ potential individuals, what follows is the shortlist of the 5 best possible recommendations.


In-depth, competency based interviews that I personally conduct

Interviewing is one of the tasks which I consider essential to carry out myself. 

I invite the most relevant candidates to interview with me. These are in-depth, competency based interviews which allow us to once again check our findings against our brief and ensure that we have indeed found the best potential talent for your role, business and culture. Each interview is recorded and hand written up, assessing knowledge, personality type, interview skills and crucially, whether that person will be a strong fit for the culture of your company. 

Skills, qualifications and even track record are only a small part of the picture. We place great importance on EQ and character!


Presenting our detailed market intelligence report

We present the shortlist to you, along with the detailed market intelligence report. This gives you all the marketing insight, feedback and trends informing our recommendations, allowing you to fully understand our reasoning. We will discuss our findings in-depth to give you a well rounded picture of the market as it is.

“Many search firms ask the question “where would your ideal candidate come from?” Princedale delivered a shortlist of candidates from world class tech companies with backgrounds as per our wish list. They pressed and scrutinised [us] throughout the process helping us get to the point where we knew we were hiring the right person into the role.”
Andy Meikle – Chief People Officer, JustGiving


Interviewing - confidential, swift and supported by Ru

We support you through confidential, swift but thorough client interviews, with me on hand at every stage. We can provide a discreet location for interviews to take place, ensuring that privacy is upheld. We manage communication with all parties and, critically, expectation management on both sides.

When interviews are complete we are there to support you in making your final choices and will extend an offer to your preferred individual.

At this critical stage, we move extremely swiftly and efficiently to ensure your choice is secured, offer extended and a mutually beneficial start date agreed.


Going the extra mile for clients and candidates - We’re in it for the long term

After care, both for you and the successful candidate, are a priority for Princedale. We check in with your new hire at regular intervals in the first year, ensuring that any bumps in the road are ironed out and all parties are happy. Our clients’ and candidate’s best interests are our primary concern. Making the successful appointment is half the story—long term success is the other.

We view longevity - tenure of appointment - as a measure of success. Many of our placements are still with the same company 5+ years later, making our recruitment fees a great investment.

If you wish to discuss your own retained executive search needs, please do get in touch.

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