Tuesday, January 18, 2011
In my corner of the world, I am seeing an increase in companies hiring strategically. In some cases, they are moving to fill positions that had been frozen during the worst of the recession. In other cases, they are doing succession planning and building the next generation of leaders. And other companies are adding head count because of growth in market share A growing number of companies are specifically targeting military veterans as a priority. Here are a few specific opportunities I am working on.
CEO Position in Houston, TX - A services company is looking for a CEO with a track record of building market share for a company at least $50M in annual revenue.
Hedge Fund in the NYC area - multiple positions in every area of the firm - investment, operations, back-office, IT support. Very specific culture and high barriers to entry. They prefer Ivy league or service academy grads with stellar records of success. Candidates coming out of financial services or consulting do well, as do military veterans.
Consulting roles in NYC - A top NYC-based consultancy is targeting former military officers - both pre-MBA and post-MBA for three of their practice areas.
Atlanta Business Development Opportunity - A staff augmentation company in Atlanta needs someone to head up a business development team. The best candidate will have a solid record of revenue generation in solutions selling, and will be a military veteran.
Medical Device Opportunity in Northern California - Leading edge medical device company is looking for a superb candidate to take over and grow an existing territory. Best candidate will bring exceptionally strong conceptual skills and interpersonal skills for working collaboratively with physicians in OR/lab settings. Military veterans do well in this organization.
Feel free to forward this information to those in your network who may be qualified and interested in any of these opportunities.
In each case, please contact me for details. Send questions and MS-Word version of your resume to:
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Partners in Health Pauses to "Remember, Reflect, and Respond" to the First Anniversary of the Haiti Earthquake
I was in the audience last night at Boston's John Hancock Hall when staff and supporters of Partners in Health gathered to "Remember, Reflect, and Respond" to the first anniversary of the Haiti Earthquake.
The event was podcast, and I encourage you to join with those of us who were there last night to hear the thoughtful reflections that were shared by those whose lives were forever touched and changed when the earth moved that January afternoon in 2010 in Haiti.
Partners in Health Podcast of "Remember, Reflect, Respond"
Let me add a couple of personal reflections from last evening. When you watch and listen to the Podcast, you will see Dr. Paul Farmer pause and point out a Haitian man sitting in the audience - a man who had been treated at one of the Zanmi Lasante hospitals (Partners in Health's Haiti Organization) after the earthquake. Reserve Coffy and his wife were injured, and their son, Jean Paul Coffy, living in Chicago, flew to the Dominican Republic and then traveled to Haiti to find his parents. They were re-united, and Jean Paul and his family were with us last night and led us all in a song that closed the program:
"We won't let Haiti go;When the last notes of this anthem of hope had stopped reverberating, I went up to Monsieur Reserve Coffy, and gave him my greetings and best wishes for continued recovery of his health - all in Creole. As we were speaking, we were approached by Dr. Elizabeth Nabel, a world-renowned cardiologist who is President of the Brigham and Women's Hospital. Earlier in the evening, she had been featured in a moving photograph taken in Haiti at the Zanmi Lasante hospital in Cange where the M. Coffy and his wife had ben taken for treatment. In the photo, Dr. Nabel stands between M. Coffy and his wife, Zilania Joacim. Dr. Nabel, hearing that Reserve and I were speaking in Creole, asked me to translate as she caught up with him and asked for a report on how his wife was doing.
We will help Haiti grow
Side by side we shall stand"
Here are some additional details of the family's story, taking from the Partners in Health website.
"The family eventually contacted Partners In Health (PIH) in Boston looking for help. After learning of their situation, our colleagues in Haiti arranged to transport the family to our hospital in Cange for medical care. But shortly after Mrs. Jaocim had been admitted, PIH staff recognized that her medical needs would exceed the level of care realistically available in Haiti at this time. Dr. Koji Nakashima assessed Mrs. Jaocim’s situation. He knew she needed to be moved out of the country if she was going to survive.
It is here that the family’s luck changed again for the better. Visiting Cange at that time were both the President of Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston, Dr. Elizabeth Nabel, and Partners HealthCare President Dr. Gary Gottlieb. After meeting the couple, they helped arrange for Mrs. Jaocim to receive free treatment at BWH. The PIH team raced to secure travel documents and make travel arrangements, and on March 28, the couple took off for Boston."
Finally, as I left Dr. Nabel and Reserve, I moved to the other side of the auditorium to greet Dr. Paul Farmer. Here is the quick story of our encounter:
1) We are both white male Bostonians who speak Haitian Creole
2) We have both run hospitals in Haiti
3) We have both worked within the Russian prison system.
If you know of others who can join our two-person club, let me know!
* * * * * *
Please follow the lead of Partners in Health and take time on this first anniversary of the Haiti earthquake to . . .
Remember . . . Reflect . . . Respond
Half of all American households have contributed to the rebuilding of Haiti. Perhaps this is an appropriate time for you to make a contribution to help with the continuing needs. Log onto the PIH site and make a contribution.
God bless Haiti and its wonderful people. God bless the PIH team.
Over the past couple of years, I have shared on several occasions the writings of my good friend, LT Rajiv Srinivasan. He has helped me and readers of The White Rhino Report to see our nation's efforts in Afghanistan through his unique lens of an Indian-American serving as an Army officer in Southwest Asia. With the Blog posting that I link below, Rajiv once again offers a new lens - literally and figuratively - through which to see his world and the world of many other warriors.
Rajiv uses the occasion of his recent Lasik surgery to talk very transparently about the lingering and insidious effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). He takes off his armor and takes the risk of being emotionally vulnerable. In the days since he first posted this article, I have shared it privately with a variety of warriors, and the response has been universally one of affirmation and gratitude. Here is one sample from one of Rajiv's fellow West Point grads who served in Iraq. I share his thoughts with you with his permission:
I am pleased to share with you Rajiv's thoughts, reflections and feelings. Once you have read the article, please take an appropriate amount of time to process your own reactions and responses - and then pass it along to others who could benefit from this kind of cathartic healing. I encourage you to take a moment to add a comment - here or directly in Rajiv's Blog. This is a conversation that should continue.
"Taking off the Armor"
God bless you, LT Srinivisan. Thanks for helping us to see more clearly and offering "Lasik for the soul"!
Monday, January 10, 2011
A Double-Edged Sword - The Military Is Losing the Best Officers, and the Private Sector Is Gaining Them : A Timely Atlantic Magazine Article
Tim Kane, writing in this month's Atlantic Magazine, has written a disturbing and well- researched article that is germane to my world - and to yours:
Why Our Best Officers Are LeavingI think it is significant that I learned of this article separately from two friends. One is a West Point grad who chose to leave the Army after serving in Iraq and fulfilling his five year post-West Point commitment. He is now in graduate school. The other friend retired as a Major General after serving a full career in the Army.
Tim Kane, who himself attended the U.S. Air Force Academy and served as an Air Force intelligence officer, addresses the troubling problem of the escalating rate at which officers are choosing to leave the military. I have chosen a few excerpts to give you a sense of his argument and research.
"Why is the military so bad at retaining these people? It’s convenient to believe that top officers simply have more- lucrative opportunities in the private sector, and that their departures are inevitable. But the reason overwhelmingly cited by veterans and active-duty officers alike is that the military personnel system—every aspect of it—is nearly blind to merit. Performance evaluations emphasize a zero-defect mentality, meaning that risk-avoidance trickles down the chain of command. Promotions can be anticipated almost to the day— regardless of an officer’s competence—so that there is essentially no difference in rank among officers the same age, even after 15 years of service. Job assignments are managed by a faceless, centralized bureaucracy that keeps everyone guessing where they might be shipped next.
The Pentagon’s response to such complaints has traditionally been to throw money at the problem, in the form of millions of dollars in talent-blind retention bonuses. More often than not, such bonuses go to any officer in the “critical” career fields of the moment, regardless of performance evaluations. This only ensures that the services retain the most risk-averse, and leads to long-term mediocrity."
"In America today, capitalism is entrepreneurial: our economy is defined by individuals failing or succeeding on the strength of their ideas. Crucially, the military has not recognized this shift. And the Army, in particular, has not changed from its 'inefficient industrial era practices,' as a report by the Strategic Studies Institute put it last year. It still treats each employee as an interchangeable commodity rather than as a unique individual with skills that can be optimized."
The author reports on the results of a survey taken to elicit ideas from a panel of West Point grads.
"In fact, a better alternative is chaos. Chaos, to economists, is known as the free market, where the invisible hand matches supply with demand. The Strategic Studies Institute report makes this very point. 'Giving officers greater voice in their assignments increases both employment longevity and productivity,' it concludes. 'The Army’s failure to do so, however, in large part accounts for declining retention among officers commissioned since 1983.'
Here is how a market alternative would work. Each commander would have sole hiring authority over the people in his unit. Officers would be free to apply for any job opening. If a major applied for an opening above his pay grade, the commander at that unit could hire him (and bear the consequences). Coordination could be done through existing online tools such as monster.com or careerbuilder.com (presumably those companies would be interested in offering rebranded versions for the military). If an officer chose to stay in a job longer than 'normal' ('I just want to fly fighter jets, sir'), that would be solely between him and his commander."
I encourage you to read the article in its entirety.
Let me add a few thoughts of my own to Kane's well presented arguments. As an executive recruiter, one of my areas of specialty is helping my client companies to find talented men and women who have sharpened their leadership skills through military service. I place very senior executives and I place the next generation of leaders, many of whom have served as Junior Military Officers - JMOs. As a recruiter, I am delighted to see talented men and women making their battle-honed skills available as leaders in the private sector and service sector. As a citizen, it disturbs me that our military is not doing a better job of retaining the best and the brightest. To continue to thrive as a nation, we will need both gifted innovative military leaders and bright business leaders.
I have had the opportunity to know and to talk with hundreds of our warriors. Kane is absolutely correct in his analysis. With rare exception, the brightest and most entrepreneurial of our warriors are choosing to leave the military for greener fields. The reasons identified in the surveys that Kane cites are the reasons that I hear when I share a cup of coffee (or an adult beverage) with some who has wrestled with the decision to resign their commission and pursue a career in business. Many would have stayed if they had been given a reasonable chance to pursue their passion in an assignment that provided opportunities for continued growth and intellectual challenge. It is my hope and prayer that those in a position to move the behemoth that is the bureaucracy of military human resources will take to heart the recommendations offered above.
The reasons cited for leaving are completely consonant with the insights shared by Daniel Pink in his book, "Drive." (reviewed earlier)Drive Review
Top performers are looking for autonomy, mastery, and purpose. With a revolutionary change in the handling of human capital, our military would be in a position to offer all three in spades.
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
IntersXtion 3 (Intersection Cubed)
Many people have been asking about the next Intersection event. I am pleased to report that we have nailed down the date of Saturday, October 22, 2011 at the same location as Intersection 2.0 - The wonderful NERD - Microsoft's New England Research and Development Center in Kendall Square.
Details to follow over the next few months, but you can be sure there will be a lot of content around the issues of leadership, what motivates us (using Daniel Pink's "Drive"), how to build and create with excellence.
The Red Sox may be in the World Series that weekend, but who better to celebrate with than the White Rhino Intersection community!
Block the date in your calendar.
This past summer, I offered in this space a review of the remarkable book: "Half Time - Moving From Success to Significance" by Bob Buford.
Half Time Review
The overwhelming response to the Half Time book has led Bob Buford to launch the Half Time Institute in Dallas. Several times each year the Institute offers seminars to help individuals to begin their journeys from Success to Significance.
Through The Halftime Institute, you will find the freedom to:
- Dream about the next season of your life.
- Clarify your core abilities and passions.
- Create a workable plan for investing your time and talent in your area of passion.
- Design the ultimate context for your personal service.
- Network with peers who will provide accountability and encouragement during your journey.
While the materials are presented from a clearly Christian perspective, one need not be a practicing Christian to benefit from the teaching.
Lloyd Reeb, author of From Success to Significance, will be our facilitator for this highly interactive program. I would ask that you prayerfully consider joining us and/or invite others who you think would be good candidates. Successful individuals aged 40-60 who are seriously seeking to align their gifts with their passion for serving a higher purpose are good candidates. This is a great way to explore some fresh ideas with other like-minded leaders.
Each paid registrant will receive the following books:
· From Success to Significance by Lloyd Reeb
· StrengthsFinder by Tom Rath
· Halftime by Bob Buford
Preparation: Each participant should pre-read Success to Significance and do the assessment in StrengthsFinder (no need to read the entire book). If you have the time, we also highly recommend reading Halftime. This preparation will ensure that you are ready to engage and make the most of our time together.
Cost: $600 per person.
If you would like to attend, please let us know as soon as possible. Space will be allocated on a first-come - first-served basis. To reserve your seat at this exciting workshop, please contact me ASAP at: firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will be glad to send you registration materials.
Comments from previous attendees:
“I highly recommend the Halftime experience to anyone who has a desire to make themselves more available for God and who is seeking the best way to serve Him. The pre-work, workshop, and follow up all helped me to get clearer about what brings me joy and honors God, and how to experience more of this joy in my walk with Him. Importantly, it also helped me see ways that I could serve God without experiencing joy – and how to avoid falling into that trap. Being surrounded by a room full of unique individuals and listening to their dreams and plans, as well as their failures and frustrations, really made it clear to me that it’s worth the extra effort to look for that profound joy that occurs when God aligns your gifts and passions with His plan and the world’s needs.
The program was well designed and the pacing and facilitation were great. The Halftime staff was absolutely top notch; and they have stayed in touch and ready to help as I seek to put my plans into action.”
“Bob Buford’s book (‘Halftime’) was used by God to speak to my heart about how to use my time, resources and talents during the phase of life normally thought of as ‘retirement’. Buford challenges believers to use the success of the ‘first half’ of life to live a life of significance in the ‘second half’. At the time I made the decision to actually try to do this, I attended one of Buford’s Halftime Institute sessions. The 2 days time investment was very worthwhile. The preparation we had to do for the sessions before we arrived assured that we were ready to engage. The size of the group was small enough for personalized learning. The work sessions helped crystallize some of my own thinking. And the interaction with others on a similar life journey provided for peer listening. A bonus was the opportunity to spend time with Bob Buford, whose own life is a model of what he has written about.
While the Halftime Institute session itself was excellent, the real value was the networking which occurred as a follow-up to the 2 day event. The HT Institute staff members were simply amazingly effective in connecting me with a whole array of leaders in various national and global Christian ministries. Through these connections, I was able to explore volunteer opportunities for service, as well as full time employment openings. Over the period of a couple of years, I volunteered with a couple of micro finance institutions, traveled to Rwanda on a trip sponsored by Halftime, joined the Board of Directors of the NYCLC, and was led by God to a leadership job at International Justice Mission (IJM). God guided me along the way, and He used the Halftime Institute as a significant tool for my journey. I strongly recommend Halftime Institute, if one is seriously interested in moving from success to significance.”
Gary R Veurink
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
International Justice Mission
If you will be traveling from outside the Boston area, we are making arrangements with the nearby Marriott hotel in Kendall Square to offer discounted room rates.
I look forward to seeing you there.