Since our inception in 2005, we’ve tried to be different by looking at the market from the bottom up and top down.
Establishing relationships as early as graduate level, we set out to assist our candidates on their journey towards future management, resulting in our network growing and maturing organically, and our relationships deepening throughout.
We make the effort to meet all of our candidates and clients, investing time in getting to know each of the people we’re representing, and acting not only as professional advisors but often trusted confidantes too. In this vein, we draw no differentiation between candidate and client, viewing everyone we interact with as a professional to whom we can offer our help and advice. Maintaining relationships built on trust and integrity is what has allowed us to succeed in a competitive industry and build a vast network of interesting and inspiring professionals.
The Cornell brand today is emblematic of this longer term, considered, relationship-driven approach. We are proud of the standards of service we set and continue to uphold, and believe every stakeholder we invest in deserves that investment.
An Oxford based consultancy, specialising in risk profiling for investors, was looking to grow significantly due to a promising new product. They wanted to hire a commercial and strategic individual, capable of advising the board and forming new commercial partnerships. Cornell was recommended for the project due to the maturity of its network of high-calibre individuals with entrepreneurial interests.
A project team from the Cornell Partnership met with the Founder/Chairman to analyse the role and discuss requirements including candidate track record, skills and cultural fit. We agreed a four week period of retained exclusivity to allow us to interrogate the market and conduct interviews. A longlist of 12 candidates was presented to give the client an idea of the breadth of options in the market. Having talked through the interview content in detail, we agreed a shortlist and established an interview timetable for a panel of directors. Final round interviews took place 2 weeks later.
In discussion with Cornell, a comprehensive offer package was put together in order to secure the favoured candidate. We maintained dialogue with a second candidate, as it was agreed that both would be worthy hires. The preferred candidate accepted, and has now spent over 12 months working with the management team developing their business case and agreeing deals with potential clients. He is expected to gain equity in the business as he continues to establish himself as a key hire.
Our corporate client had grown dramatically over a period of years, having made numerous acquisitions. A leading private equity house bought into the business 5 years ago, and a timeline for exit is in the process of being finalised. In view of this, the client has been seeking to build out the central operations function at a number of levels. We were mandated to secure a senior operations development specialist by the private equity business.
Over a number of meetings with both the PE team and the corporate operations team, we established some clear parameters for the search. The desired individual had a fairly unusual hybrid skillset, and we leveraged our network across the consultancy and corporate spaces. We also approached a number of individuals previously unknown to us due to the specialist nature of their background. We updated the client weekly on a constantly evolving longlist and shortlist to final round stage.
After a fairly extensive interview and case study process, the client decided to hire not one, but two individuals into the operations team. The execution of the process had enabled them to realise that there were two very distinct backgrounds available to them, each of whom could add value in a different way. Our relationship with the corporate client continues, and we are currently engaged on two further assignments with them.
A personal referral led us to build a long standing relationship with a serial entrepreneur who founded numerous startups post MBA. The first, a healthcare innovation business, received funding after a year in operation and at that stage we succeeded in finding them an investment and product guru. Our client retained equity in the business but went on to found two further businesses – it was during the evolution of the second of these that he called on Cornell to secure a Head of Strategy.
Our client called us saying he was looking for the impossible. A German speaking strategy consultant, with experience of a particularly niche area of the healthcare industry. We leveraged our candidate network going back some years and managed to find the perfect fit for the business. The chosen candidate was interviewed and offered within a 24 hour period.
The client is now looking to secure a 3rd round of funding. We retain an excellent relationship with them and are looking to hire further Strategy Associates into the team
“I have worked with Cornell Partnership for over 5 years whilst working in a large corporate and subsequently in private equity. I have found them to be my ‘go to’ search firm for the brightest and best candidates. I have found their approach refreshingly direct, honest and unlike most search firms lacking the nonsense I normally encounter. For highly analytical, dynamic up and coming candidates I have not found anyone better.”