S&C Executive Search Services

Executive talent is a high-stakes investment. You can’t afford to get it wrong, yet you may not have the resources to scour the market for the best person yourself. Described below are four factors that together outline the value S&C brings to executive search.

Trusted Thought Partner

For executive level hires, it’s all about nuance and matching to your organization’s trajectory, so a great search consultant should have a deep understanding of organizational strategy and design. In this regard, S&C’s wide-ranging expertise adds exponential value, enabling a far more nuanced appreciation of your needs than any pure search firm could assemble.


  • As a purpose driven management consultancy, Schaffer&Combs serves as the strategic thought partner to some of the most ambitious social impact organizations in the world. This unique positioning allows us to leverage the power of our firm’s other services — board development, organizational design, strategic planning, business planning, and more — equipping us with the pattern recognition to derive sophisticated insights as we co-design the requirements of the role. Moreover, our leadership team’s sector expertise and executive experience is expansive, and many of us have actually served in executive positions similar to the roles for which we recruit, giving us a strong sense of what it takes to sit in the seat.

    The expertise above also results in a framework of thinking that permeates our entire approach to executive search. With S&C, you benefit from valuable advisory support that complements the actual search as we evaluate what this role should bring to the organization. As we develop the profile, we consider the greater context of organizational structure, strategy, and impact. We are able to assess and optimize how this particular search will add value to your leadership team and enable growth, scale, and achievement of your strategic goals. This rare combination of factors adds exponential value to the search and allows us to better map the market, connect executive career trajectory to organizational trajectory, and cultivate the precise talent needed for success.


Tailored Design and Compelling Storytelling

If you want to set your organization apart from the hundreds of others vying for top talent, you’ll want a relationship with a firm that can authentically market the role. S&C’s approach relies upon a deep understanding of your organization, compelling storytelling around the opportunity, and solutions highly tailored to your needs.


  • For our insights to be most valuable, it’s imperative that we apply them to the specific context of your organization. Accordingly, Schaffer&Combs begins every engagement with a period of intense consultation in which we listen, learn, and endeavor to get to know you at the DNA-level. We study your strategic documents and other key organizational materials. We conduct stakeholder interviews with applicable leadership, staff, and other relevant parties. We come to understand your organization’s strengths, pain points and priorities, and in so doing derive a more nuanced appreciation of the Key Pillars of the role. With this foundation, we are able to highly tailor our recruiting and lead interviews with authenticity.

    As we learn about you, we place equal emphasis on unearthing what’s most exciting and appealing to prospective candidates — both in terms of the organization itself and about the position in particular. We take great care to infuse this sense of excitement into our written work as we craft a compelling job description. Further, we devise powerful talking points to verbally market and sell the opportunity. We strive to tell your story as passionately as you would yourself, and we champion your brand and impact in every conversation and touchpoint along the way. Your story and the opportunity presented by this position will be vital to enticing the right person to leave their current professional setting, and we take great pride in our ability to concisely capture it and keep candidates leaning forward.


Proven Connector Approach

Passive candidates account for nearly 70% of the available workforce, so without a strategy for accessing that portion of the market, you’re fishing from a very small pool. The majority of S&C’s placements result from active sourcing, and our proven approach relies upon our network of relationships with several thousand valuable connectors.


  • The value of retained search is the identification of the best person at the best time and place. Many search firms emphasize their “candidate database,” and, we too have a database and network containing many thousands of candidates, extending across every major executive function, and hailing from a variety of sectors. However, such repositories are by definition a list of people whose status was known as of a certain date in the past. Consequently, any firm that today advertises their candidate database more prominently than they advertise their depth of relationships with executives in multiple industries and their facility with dynamic research platforms is resting on an old approach.

    Schaffer&Combs is fortunate to enjoy strong relationships with well-positioned executives and influencers worldwide, who have come to view us as a source of highly attractive impact-oriented opportunities. These connectors further leverage their own networks on our behalf, habitually generating valuable referrals for our searches. We add to these relationships regularly, and augment them with highly targeted research tailored to your organization and the Key Pillars of the role. S&C leaves no stone unturned as we map your ecosystem, identify similar organizations, connect with affinity groups, and research specific profiles. We pride ourselves on our ability to convert interest from among those already happily employed, and the connector approach outperforms the candidate database in this context many times over.


Dedication of a Full Project Team

For hard-to-fill executive roles, it’s a resource intensive activity, and you want assurances that your search is appropriately prioritized. When you work with S&C, you have the luxury of a consistent and customized project team specifically assigned to the search, coupled with the personalized attention and hands-on involvement of our senior leadership.


  • Schaffer&Combs approaches staffing for search projects with great consideration as to who is best suited to lead it, and then assigns a full team that will remain with the project from inception to completion. You will enjoy the support of a lead consultant, an expert project manager, and an experienced cadre of researchers to attract the right level of talent to the role. Our firm’s size is an asset in that, compared to many large corporate firms, we are small enough to give your organization the senior leadership and personalized attention it deserves; by the same token, we are large enough to deploy highly focused and comprehensive resources, far more so than an independent consultant or solo-practitioner can dedicate.

    With a seasoned vision-aligned team at your disposal, we are able to provide extremely high-touch service and take all of the tedious work off of your plate. Supported by your feedback at strategic points in the process, we are able to more rapidly saturate the market and engage in conversations with a greater number of potential prospects. With overlapping workstreams, our team construct enables us to progress candidates through a series of increasingly sophisticated interviews, so that you ultimately need only interview a handful of well-vetted highly qualified finalists. This approach has historically allowed us to deliver superb results with surprising speed without sacrificing a diligent, patient approach to finding the right individuals for your critical role.




S&C’s Executive Search practice maintains an industry-leading success rate, and we enjoy consistently positive feedback from our clients.

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Current Searches

S&C is currently recruiting for a variety of clients.

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We would be pleased to speak with you to learn more about working together. Please email us to begin a conversation.

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