Would you appoint some one to a high profile senior management
post with only one years experience of management? Would you expect a
minimum of three years, more than five years or at least ten years?
If experience isn’t measured in years how should it be measured?
Frank Lampard has just been appointed manager of one of the top
clubs in the premiership after only one year as a manager in which he
failed to gain promotion from the championship. Clearly his employers
are not basing their decision on his track record as a manager.
Granted he has worked for a number of very experienced and successful
managers, he was a top class professional and having been a senior
player at the club he understands the culture.
As a manager I would certainly agree that I was influenced by my
experience of being managed by some outstanding managers. I picked up
some good habits and was shown some effective ways of working. But I
know from experience that a good professional does not necessarily
make a good manager, it’s a different set of skills. And knowing how
things are done in an organisation can be an advantage but most
employers want to appoint senior managers who will bring fresh ideas
and new ways of working.
After many years recruiting to senior management posts I do agree
with the Chelsea board that measuring experience in years is not a
reliable indicator. I know from experience that a candidate’s ten
years experience may be one years experience repeated ten times!
However a track record needs to be long enough to evidence skills and
abilities that will be needed in the post. So it’s not about the
number of years a candidate has held a relevant post or posts but what
they packed into those years, what they archived, what they leaned and
therefore what they can bring to the vacant post.
Under the heading “ Experience “ on the person specification
needs to be specifics such as experience of managing a big budgets and
large staff groups plus evidence of successfully managing change
,improving performance and delivering on targets. But not so specific
that you risk ruling out what would otherwise be an good candidate.
Blair Mcpherson former Director, author and blogger www.blairmcpherson.co.uk