Odgers Interim US: Reflections on the first 12 months
Paul Smith, Managing Partner of Odgers Interim US, reflects on the challenges and opportunities during the first 12 months of the Odgers Interim US offering
When I landed in Boston, MA in January of last year I was looking forward to the incredible adventure of setting up the Odgers Interim executive offering across the United States. After 10 years of working for the brand in the UK I was given the opportunity of replicating the success of the interim executive product. No one then could have predicted what a year 2020 would be and the novel challenges we would face. As I reflected six months ago, 2020 was a tale of two halves: pre-pandemic and post-pandemic.
At the beginning of the year, before the Covid-19 virus reached the US, we had a successful launch. From the get-go, we were having encouraging conversations with new clients as they welcomed the prospect of hiring interim executives. I spent the first few months travelling between the 14 Odgers Berndtson offices across the country, meeting the Partners as well as building relationships with clients and candidates. We saw the demand rising and we were placing interim executives across different industries and in various functions. The brand was growing rapidly.
Then, the global pandemic reached the country, causing a nation-wide lockdown, and it was followed by rising political tension amongst many US citizens in the run-up to the presidential election. Despite the disruption, we haven’t slowed down. Throughout this period of uncertainty, our colleagues across the Odgers Berndtson search business have supported us and they continue to refer work to the interim brand.
I would like to mention one distinct piece of pro-bono work carried out by the Odgers Berndtson team in response to the pandemic. From New York to Texas and over to California, the team worked quickly, innovatively and collaboratively to connect key healthcare professionals to healthcare facilities in need and mobilize the national healthcare pandemic response. Their quick thinking and use of our recruitment services ensured 1000s of doctors and nurses were available to support those affected by the virus.
A special mention to Steve Potter, our Group CEO in the US, who has shown true leadership in an exceedingly difficult year. His entrepreneurial spirit, willingness to back new ventures and above all his human nature is inspirational.
Looking more specifically at the past few months, we can still see a growing demand for interim executives across the US. The need for agile, flexible resource has become even more apparent to our clients, and our candidates want the greater variety of roles a portfolio career can offer. The rising interim executive demand is evident in the number of executives we have placed over the past 12-months and our overall increased brand awareness. Going forward, we are looking forward to what 2021 will bring. The new additions to the team, Lori Rubin and Glen Johnson who have joined us as Partners in our Atlanta office, will be critical to our further expansion and development over the next year. We are also on the lookout for more exceptional people as we continue to grow and build the brand across the US.
If you would like to find out more about the interim executive proposition please do contact me directly.