Our Process

How We Succeed
DHC Search’s Process

Our search process includes six dynamic phases: Discovery; Creating the Pool (Research & Outreach); Candidate Assessment; Selection; Reference Checks/Psychometric Assessments; and Successful Conclusions.

1. Discovery

Here we learn about your specific leadership challenges. In these discovery meetings, our objective is not to fill an open box on an organizational chart, but to better understand your culture, mission, challenges, hopes, and vision. Our expertise during leadership transition helps organizations manage change. We understand the consultative role we have in providing creative solutions to leadership issues that may exist in your organization.

Together, we’ll facilitate a process that leads to agreement about goals and expectations for your next executive hire, and we will help you to fully understand your role in the search process.

Next, we develop a position description, outlining the challenges of the position, the experience and characteristics needed to meet those challenges, and the long-term objectives the new executive will be asked to achieve.

2. Creating the Pool

In the next stage, we strategize, research, and reach out to develop a diverse pool of qualified applicants.

Once the position description is approved, the DHC team creates a tailored plan for both broad and targeted outreach, drawing upon the firm’s rich and diverse resources. We also tap our collective national network of nonprofit professionals, including contacting senior executives for recommendations and referrals.

3. Assessment

Once an initial pool has taken shape, we evaluate each candidate’s strengths and potential against the expectations expressed in the position description. Through a combination of multiple telephone and in-person interviews, we assess the core competencies and appropriateness of each candidate for the position, as well as their expected fit within the culture of our client organization. We are trained in and rely heavily upon behavioral interviewing techniques as the best method for predicting future candidate performance.

4. Selection

As you prepare to meet a highly vetted pool of candidates, we facilitate the selection process, helping to prepare interview questions and candidate assessment materials that will guide the interviews you’ll conduct. In many instances, our consultants serve as in-person facilitators, helping search committee members focus their questions, probe for responses, and move through the decision-making process in an objective and productive way.

5. Reference Checks & Assessments

Once the finalists for the position have been determined, we conduct detailed reference interviews about them with past employers, direct reports, colleagues, and volunteers. We also confirm educational credentials and, when asked, are also able to provide psychometric assessments.

6. Successful Conclusions

A successful conclusion depends on a happy candidate. When the search committee is confident they have found a candidate who fits the position profile, their vision and their organization’s culture, DHC helps to foster a competitive, win-win employment offer, ensuring that your next executive is enthusiastic and prepared for the challenge ahead.