New White Paper – Closing the Gender Gap: How Companies Can Retain Women Engineers

women_in_engineering_white_paper_coverThere’s been a surge in recent press about the lack of women in Engineering/Technology. While many media outlets are exploring this problem, few seem to be going to the source—women in engineering and technology—and asking them for their insight. Understanding this issue at the ground level is the key to improving the representation of women in engineering overall.

We went out into the marketplace and did just that: surveyed women to better understand why women engineers stay with (or leave) their employers. We developed the results of this anonymous survey  into a white paper to help Fortune 1000 companies understand the needs and drivers of women engineers to better attract and retain them.

To read and download the white paper, fill out the form below.

Closing the Gender Gap: How Companies Can Retain Women Engineers

Please provide the following information for instant access to the white paper.

Frank Davidson Joins Peerless Industrial Group as Director of Operations

We are pleased to announce that Frank Davidson has joined Peerless Industrial Group as of January 4, 2016 as Director of Operations. The successful candidate was identified in 9 days and the search was completed in 73 days. The search was conducted by Terry Gallagher, President of Battalia Winston.

Peerless Industrial Group is a $115 million subsidiary of Kito Corporation, which is the largest producer of chain and wire rope hoists in the world with $600 million in global revenues. As Director of Operations, Mr. Davidson reports directly to the President and oversees a staff of 352 employees.

Mr. Davidson has 23 years of progressively responsible global operational leadership success within Aerospace, Semiconductor, and Industrial Capital Equipment manufacturing environments. He has had responsibility for business administration, financial planning, customer service, global supply chain, and logistics management. Most recently, Mr. Davidson was Senior Operations Director at Despatch Industries, a $42 million global leader in high performance industrial ovens and other thermal products, responsible for integrating post-acquisition cultural changes to achieve increased profitability through LEAN production initiatives, sourcing initiatives and 3rd party integration.

Prior to that, Mr. Davidson was VP North America Operations for a $110 million capital equipment manufacturing division of Illinois Tool Works where he established two Regional Centers of Excellence and improved operating income by 12% in 18 months.

Mr. Davidson earned a Masters degree in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix and an undergraduate degree in Operations Management at Troy State University. He graduated Magna Cum Laude for both degrees.


The Value of a Consensus-Based Search Process for Nonprofits

The following article, authored by Battalia Winston’s CEO and Chairwoman Dale Winston, was originally published in Philanthropy News Digest. 

If the leadership of a nonprofit or association is not on the same page prior to launching a search for a new team member, there’s a high probability the search will go awry. Therefore, it’s essential that everyone involved in the search — directors, members of the search committee, key management expected to work with or report to the new person, etc. — begins the process with an agreed-upon set of requirements and qualifications for the position, general agreement as to prior experience needed for the job, and first-year deliverables.

Recently, my firm, Battalia Winston, was working with a client that found itself in this very predicament. The organization — a nonprofit focused on supporting the arts — had recently hired a CFO who was failing to meet expectations. His failure to deliver as expected was frustrating for everyone across the organization. As soon as my firm was brought in, I realized the newly hired CFO wasn’t meeting the organization’s objectives for the position simply because they had never been clearly established or communicated to him.

I see this a great deal when recruiting new leadership for mature nonprofit organizations. In many cases, the incumbent leader has been with the organization for many years, even decades. When a long-time leader retires, the role he or she has been playing may be dramatically different than what the organization now requires. Or, the incumbent’s position may have evolved so much over time that it is difficult for anyone but the incumbent to fully describe it, much less be able to wear all those hats. Without a clear understanding of the role as it has been performed, each person involved in the search process tends to develop his or her own opinion about the ideal candidate and vets candidates against those criteria.

To help nonprofits avoid such situations, Battalia Winston has developed a unique service, the Consensus Based Search Process, that eliminates potential roadblocks to a successful search process, establishes clear expectations for all parties, and helps to ensure a smoother recruitment effort.

First, we gather all decision makers together for a facilitation meeting. The sixty- to ninety-minute meeting is designed to help the group come to an agreement on the critical requirements of the search. (Even if your organization is not using an executive search firm, it is important that a third party leads the process to ensure its objectivity and neutrality.)

During the facilitation meeting, we ask each committee member to write down his or her understanding of:

  • day-to-day responsibilities of the position;
  • key qualifications candidates must have to be considered; and
  • year-one objectives and deliverables.

Then, each team member is asked to read his or her responses aloud. We write all the responses on a white board so that everyone can see the common themes. The session allows search committee members to express their thoughts and concerns while moving toward common ground regarding the essential criteria for a successful candidate.

The process is simple and highly effective. We focus the group on the three most important elements of the position, thereby avoiding meandering conversations that may or may not lead to consensus. The process also quickly identifies outlier opinions and serves to encourage dialogue between members of the group so that each member understands the perspective of the others.

After discussing common themes and excising the outlier opinions, we evaluate and prioritize the remaining metrics.

At the conclusion of the meeting, a clear, agreed-upon set of specifications has been established for the search. This is helpful to us, the recruiters, because it provides a clear mandate. For the search committee, it provides a clear set of criteria by which to evaluate candidates as they move through the interview process. And for the candidates, it provides clarity regarding expectations and deliverables.

There are many risks associated with a misdirected search effort. Without clearly defined expectations and benchmarks, nonprofits risk losing qualified candidates. Internal conflict and a lack of agreement and understanding between search committee members also can lead to unnecessary rounds of interviews and drawn-out searches — an incredibly frustrating process for candidates that can hurt an organization’s reputation. To protect your organization’s brand and ensure that it is positioned to secure top talent, you should begin with a consensus-building process.

 


Mark Livingston, CPA Joins Harrington Hoists

Battalia Winston is pleased to announce that Mark Livingstong, CPA has joined Harrington Hoists as of January 4, 2016. Terry Gallagher completed the search.

Harrington Hoists, Inc., a $250 million subsidiary of Kito Group Company, which is the largest producer of chain and wire rope hoists in the world with $600 million in revenues is located in Manheim, PA and Corona, CA.

 Mr. Livingston has over 15 years of financial management experience including Big 4 public accounting background. For the first 10 years of his career, Mr. Livingston worked for E&Y and Harsco, a $3 billion global industry company.

Prior to accepting this Corporate Controller role, Mr. Livingston was the VP of Finance / Controller at Cooper-Booth Wholesale, a $500 million wholesale distributor, where he led a team of 7, engaged in collections, A/R, A/P, payroll, G/GL, accounting and reporting services. He also served as Finance Manager at Rentokil North America, a $500 million + pest control service company, for seven years, managing the annual budgets and the monthly forecasts for 200 branches and cost centers.

Mr. Livingston earned an MBA from Pennsylvania State University and an undergraduate degree in Accounting and Economics at Shippensburg University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He has an active C.P.A. license, is a Member of American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and a Certified Information Systems Auditor.


Battalia Winston Completes Search for W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Battalia Winston Executive Search is proud to announce that Dr. Anitra N. Manning was selected and has started her new position at the W. K. Kellogg Foundation as Talent and Human Resources Manager, Talent Development. Battalia Winston Partner Ellen Romberg completed the search.

Anitra has served as a leadership development executive across sectors for over 15 years. She has led fortune 500 and non-profit organizations in conceptualizing and implementing leadership and learning programs through the integration of innovative solutions, platforms and on the job sustainability approaches. She was most recently the first vice president and business learning strategist lead for SunTrust Banks, Inc. in Atlanta. Prior to this she was a leadership development consultant with Bayer CropScience, director, strategic partnerships at the YWCA of the Greater Triangle, founding director for Meredith College’s Institute for Women’s Leadership and leadership development consultant with Girl Scouts of the USA, National Learning Services.

Anitra received her Doctorate of Education in higher education management from the University of Pittsburgh, her master’s degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University, Heinz College and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Hampton University.


Recruiting Top Talent to Small Cities

by Terry Gallagher, President, Battalia Winston

Private equity firms consider a number of factors when evaluating a company for acquisition, but many overlook a critical challenge: attracting executive-level talent to the company after acquisition.

If PE firms plan to use their portfolio companies as foundations for building bigger, more complex organizations (as is often the case), they’ll need a high-performing team of executives at the helm. Specifically, they’ll need executives with experience building the infrastructure necessary to scale the company’s growth and position the company for sale once it reaches its optimal value.

In many cases, building this type of A-team will require some replacements. During the “pruning period,” PE firms must evaluate the existing management team and determine whether or not they need to upgrade to a more qualified leadership team to achieve their growth goals.

But identifying and recruiting “upgraded” executives can be difficult, especially for companies that aren’t located in metropolitan areas. Recruiting talent to a small, lesser-known city can be difficult on its own, and an environment of uncertainty or instability after the acquisition exacerbates the issue.

I’ve worked with a number of organizations in this exact predicament: recently acquired companies in small towns like Ferndale, Washington or Palmyra, Pennsylvania that need to attract transformational leaders. It’s not impossible, but it does require a clear strategy.

PE firms planning on acquiring companies in smaller cities need to be prepared to handle recruiting challenges. Each company will, of course, have its own unique challenges, but there are several best practices I’ve developed that will set the stage for success:

  1. Determine Recruitment Challenges During Due Diligence 

    Begin by evaluating the company’s existing talent acquisition practices and talent pool. How were the existing executives recruited? Or did they come from within the company? What percentage of leaders and employees already lived in the city before they joined the company? Has the company had success recruiting from outside the town before? What is the average length of tenure – and is there any relationship between length of tenure and the employees’ point of origin (i.e. Can the company retain employees that it’s recruited from other cities?)? Does the company tend to retain executives (i.e. more experienced employees) but fail to retain newer or younger employees, or vice-versa?Exploring these questions will provide PE firms with a thorough understanding of potential recruiting challenges before they acquire the company, so that they can be fully prepared as soon as the deal is closed.

  2. Identify Talent Needs at the Executive LevelIf the acquisition will result in a merger of two companies, the PE firm will need to quickly evaluate the leadership of the merged companies, retaining the best employees and managing any downsizing in a manner that will minimize the impact on employee morale. More importantly, they’ll need to retain the talent that will not only run the company at the time of the merger, but that will be able to manage the business as it continues on its path of rapid growth. Experience working with mergers/acquisitions within the industry should be a high-priority need. Once gaps are identified, the PE firm will need to evaluate the best way to fill that position, keeping the recruitment challenges they’ve already uncovered in mind. Is an outside hire—potentially one from another city—the right choice, or is an inside hire a better option? Armed with an understanding of the company’s recruiting history, the PE firm should be able to make an educated decision here.
  3. Target the Right Candidates with the Right Message 

    Recruiting top talent to smaller cities is all about developing the right candidate profile and fully understanding the needs of the candidates in the pipeline. First, it’s important to understand that some candidates will simply not be interested in leaving a bustling metropolitan area for a small city; don’t waste too much time on those candidates. On the other hand, boomerangs—candidates who attended college or grew up in a small town and may want to return to one—are smart targets, as are candidates from mid-sized cities.It’s also important to fully understand any of the candidates’ personal circumstances and family needs that might affect their willingness to relocate—have their children gone off to college recently? Are they burned out from big city living? Do they want to be closer to family on the opposite coast? All of these factors can turn an unlikely candidate into a good fit.

    Once the right candidate profile is identified, the people in communication with the candidates—HR managers, recruiters, headhunters—must be educated on how to sell the value of the city. They should not only tout the value of the city (its attractions, history, high standard of living, etc.) but should also tailor their pitch to each candidate’s needs. For example, an empty-nester looking to leave Manhattan might be particularly interested in the light traffic and walkability of the town while a younger boomerang candidate might be interested in the lively town center or nightlife.

 

PE firms that are acquiring companies in small cities should be prepared for recruiting challenges. But despite the obstacles that come with attracting big-time execs to small-town life, a thoughtful strategy can lead to success.


Christopher Smith Named Director, Talent Acquisition at Schindler Elevator Corporation


We are pleased to announce that 
Christopher Smith joined SCHINDLER ELEVATOR CORPORATION on November 2, 2015 as Director, Talent Acquisition.

The search was conducted by Terry Gallagher, President at Battalia Winston.  Terry identified the successful candidate in 21 days and the search was completed in 70 days.

Schindler is the largest supplier of escalators and the second largest manufacturer of elevators worldwide. Schindler manufactures, installs, maintains and modernizes mobility solutions for almost every type of building requirement worldwide with $10 billion revenues and more than 48,000 employees.

Christopher Smith has 18 years of progressive talent acquisition and recruiting experience working at Teva Pharmaceuticals, Catalent Pharma Solutions, Johnson & Johnson and most recently at Sun Pharmaceuticals. At Sun Pharmaceuticals, a $4 billion global company that develops, makes, and markets generic pharmaceuticals, Mr. Smith managed a team of Recruiters and Sourcers to support all functions within the US sites.

At Teva Pharmaceuticals, a $14 billion company, Mr. Smith built and developed a team of talent acquisition professionals (US, Canada and LATAM) and supported strategic change by driving the volume recruiting project, technology implementation, pipelining for succession management programs, workforce planning, developing TA process and policy and building the Executive Recruiting and University Relations models. Previously, at Catalent Pharma a $1.8 billion company, Mr. Smith was responsible for managing and developing a team of seven Recruiters and Sourcers located in North and South America. Earlier in his career, Mr. Smith also held various Talent Acquisition management positions at Johnson & Johnson.

Mr. Smith earned a B.S. degree in Biology from Rowan University. He also has certifications as an AIRS Certified Internet Recruiter, a Certified Diversity Recruiter and a SHRM Professional in Human Resources.