De JAGER Executive Search has always placed significant value on our role as a corporate citizen. While our responsibility has been displayed in the underlying values of the firm, we have also sought ways to demonstrate a more tangible contribution.
In recent years, we have taken our commitment further through an initiative to directly support the Not-For-Profit (NFP) sector. As part of our Board Search Practice in Australia, we undertake several executive searches each year to support NFP boards on a pro bono basis or at a deeply discounted fee. The proposition is quite simple:
- We will work with the board to define the governance capabilities required and to develop the profile for a successful director.
- Working with our corporate HR network, we will identify candidates who have the capability, commitment, capacity and qualifications to be considered for the role.
- The opportunity will also be advertised on selected websites that are considered effective in communicating NFP governance opportunities but the focus will be those available as a “development opportunity”
- A candidate short list will be developed and profiles presented to the Board Selection Committee; ongoing interviews will be facilitated and support provided in final selections and reference checking.
Why a “Development Opportunity”? We believe this experience, not normally available in most corporate settings, can offer several benefits including:
- Building an understanding of the role governance plays, from the director’s perspective
- The opportunity to deliver, and sometimes develop, specific skills in a new environment and under different operating and economic conditions
- Experiencing the leadership task from a different position in the light of different challenges
- Extending the understanding of, and gaining a new appreciation for, making a contribution; developing a deeper understanding for altruistic behaviour in organisational settings
- Developing a new understanding of organisation behaviour
- Enabling the development of a commitment to the community by the board member and offering an avenue for companies to make a community contribution through their “sponsorship” of candidates
We have worked closely with organisations such as Children’s Cancer Institute Australia, YWCA NSW, Learning Links, Meals on Wheels (NSW) and Epilepsy Action Australia. In addition, we have discussed board needs with several other NFP organisations regarding our capability to provide support in the future. Across these organisations we have supported filling over ten board roles. We have targeted organisations that are often not in a position to consider a full search for the board. Based on our experience over the past year, we are about to re-commit to the NFP sector that de JAGER Executive Search will continue to offer pro bono support.
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