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Unpacking 2021: Leadership Hiring Trends and Their 2022 Carryovers

Thank you to our clients, candidates, and networking friends for your partnerships and for an outstanding 2021. In reviewing the year past, we expect a few of these candidate and employer observations and trends to continue into 2022.

- Retained executive search recruiting had fewer early stage in-person interviews, but otherwise engagements were less adversely delayed by Covid as long as consultants fully prioritized each candidate's and client's heavily-booked Teams and Zoom calendars.

- Search consultants were highly effective nationally if they had unblocked access to target companies' talent. We completed key search assignments in the Northwest, Southern California, Mid-West, Mid-Atlantic, and the Northeast.

- More than ever, engaging the best employed candidates requires highly experienced consultants possessing the credentials to be trusted by employed executives. Search consultant's bios are checked online by candidates who want to understand the prospective new employer's business circumstances, industry, and culture compared to their current situations.

- Middle and senior level executive candidates will continue to make credentials and judgment calls about whom to trust and how to best de-risk their stepping forward. In 2022, the the ability to engage a candidate will remain the leading necessity and competitive advantage to employers.

- 2021’s unexpected resignations among the middle and senior executive ranks will continue. Companies that under Covid circumstances had deferred changing out certain underperforming leaders may no longer hesitate. Unforeseen departures could accelerate in 2022 as previously hesitant employers commence leadership change-outs.


High knowledge blog traffic suggests that today’s best leaders are remaining informed of the big picture while they manage their businesses. They seek perspective and ideas from many sources. Our firm's 2021’s most read articles included:

· Advice for Hiring: Need to Recover a Failing Search? Here’s How

· How Covid-19 Can Alter Search Firm Selection Considerations

· Today’s Leaders are Walking and Managing Thru History

· Firm Places USA President into Top Technology Company

· Firm Adopts Special Expertise Alliances

· Multiple C-Level West Coast Placements During Covid


Executives sought information during working hours and especially as their workweek matured. Site visits analysis shows that a majority of executives accessed content on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Executives visited 85% via PC, 12% by mobile phone, and 3% from a tablet.


We welcome your nominations of topics, leadership recruitment trends, opportunities, and challenges. Suggestions can be submitted at

Best wishes for a great start to 2022. Thanks again, Eric Gustafson - Founder/CEO


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