Deretta cole rhodes, phd.

Strategic Advisor
Advisory Practice Leader

The impact of the pandemic has created a discussion surrounding the importance of assessing and evaluating executive hires and understanding what clients want when they ask for “fit” in executive hires for their organizations. Factors prompting this discussion are The Great Resignation and the need to understand the impact of chemistry and fit in an organization. In this time of The Great Resignation, the focus on the right executive hire is important for vitality in any organization. The Great Resignation, described as the Big Quit, is the ongoing trend of employees voluntarily leaving their jobs from Spring 2021 to present. Employees are citing the decision to leave is to find the right experience and the organization that can provide that experience. The Great Resignation impacts the quality of work and time to execution that can adversely affect bottom line revenues for an organization.

During this time in which executive hires are seeking the right job, it is also an opportunity for organizations to choose the right executive. In the quest for the right job for the executive and the right executive for the organization, assessments and evaluations provide the right tools. Assessments provide data points and rigor in the evaluation process. When there is rigor in evaluating an executive candidate, it allows for a shorter transition and integration for the new leader, their newly acquired team, and the organization. Assessments provide a blueprint of the executive hire’s validity and sustainability in the organization. It becomes a win-win for organizations and executive candidates when the decision is made to use assessments in the evaluation process. You cannot go wrong with that approach to bringing the right executive to the organization.

In searching for the right executive, the discussion comes up regarding acquiring executive talent that has chemistry and the right fit. When hiring leaders indicate they want the right fit, I always ask the question, “Before we talk about fit, how would you describe your culture?” The reason for the question regarding culture is it allows an understanding of what it feels like to work in the organization. Culture is the tacit behavior order that is shown in the organization by how people act, relate, and respond to one another. It creates the way in which organizations function. When a member of the organization brings to bear their personal values, motivations, and development needs, it establishes the intersect of the organization and people to produce culture. With this understanding, the importance of chemistry and fit typically is characterized as the alignment of the values of the organization with that of a candidate or employee.

Culture is further defined by behaviors that are outlined by competencies. Most leaders in an organization can describe their competencies as the actual behaviors that are valued. Words like collaboration, communication, and growth mindset, provide the glide path for organizations to move forward. An organization’s competency and behaviors should match the fit of a potential candidate. When fit can be articulated by the behaviors that are valued and the required competencies, you find the answer to chemistry and fit that is often asked for by clients.

Assessing and Evaluating Executive Hires


With over 40 years of search experience and results, we're ready to serve you and your team.