Entrepreneur’s Journal: Choosing the right CEO

Entrepreneur’s Journal: Choosing the right CEO

Because of continued troubles at Sprint (NYSE: S), the company’s CEO, Gary Forsee, essentially got the boot. In fact, over the years, the CEO spot has been pretty tough – as seen with companies like Disney (NYSE: DIS), Boeing (NYSE: BA), and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ).
So, if you have doubts about a candidate, it’s probably better to
wait. "To get the right CEO, it takes time," said Dipanshu Sharma, the
founder and CTO of V-ENABLE. "So allocate at least three to four months for the process." Actually, his company recently hired a new CEO.

Sharma believes it is critical to hire a recruiter. "A top-tier venture capital firm recommended a recruiter for us," he said.


And the process was strenuous: "We set up a weekly call with the
recruiter and the board/management. Every week we would prioritize the
candidate list. After a few weeks, we got candidates that we had
initial conversations with. Of those we found that matched our
selection criteria, we held several rounds of interviews. In the final
process, we flew them to our offices and introduced them to a broader
team before finalizing the candidate."

It was also important to spend time on creating a candidate profile. As for V-ENABLE, the company focused on a CEO with:

  • Demonstrated success in previous CEO roles
  • Team player
  • Growth oriented
  • Raised capital and has experience in M&A
  • Worked in wireless and has relationships with wireless service providers

"Our board and management went through several iterations to make
sure we were covering the short term as well as long term needs for the
company," said Sharma.

Tom Taulli is the author of various books, including The Complete M&A Handbook and The Edgar Online Guide to Decoding Financial Statements. He also operates DealProfiles.com.

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