Hiring the Right Leader

Whenever you are hiring from the outside, despite a rigorous interviewing process, you are inviting uncertainty. Many successful people are excellent interviewees and look great on paper, but all too often once they come on board they just don’t fit. They don’t understand the culture. They can’t understand your business and its nuances. They are difficult to deal with. They push too hard or too soft. They lack interpersonal finesse. They can’t form a strong vision. The reasons for failure are plentiful…

There IS a way to more accurately evaluate a candidate’s ability to execute the demands of a leadership role. Kilberry’s management assessments give you predictive insight into what it will be like to work with the candidate post-hire. We give you a thumbs-up, thumbs-down recommendation on whether to hire the candidate.

Leading an organization is complex, and people are even more so. Well beyond tests or other half-measures that just describe a person, Kilberry’s management assessments accurately predict how the candidate will land in your organization and whether he/she has what it takes to get the job done.

Our seasoned doctoral-level management psychologists have a valuable mix of business experience and psychological insight that drives our recommendations.


  • Hire-No Hire recommendation
  • How the candidate fits the leadership demands of the role
  • How the candidate compares with what you might find elsewhere in the marketplace
  • How the candidate is likely to develop in the future
  • How to help the successful candidate ‘hit the ground running’
  • Informs an onboarding plan
  • Reduce the risk of mismatches and surprises

Back the Right Management Team

As an acquirer or investors, you are buying more than just assets and customers – you are acquiring a management team and it is integral to the success of the deal. Experience tells you that the management team is often the difference between a homerun deal and a major headache. At the same time, most private equity firms or corporate acquisition teams don’t have a systematic process to enhance their portfolio company management team’s leadership abilities.

We believe that the process of getting the most out of management begins before the deal is done, is solidified in the early days, and gets executed during ownership. What successful acquisition teams realize is that management due diligence helps the deal team in tailoring a nuanced post-closing blueprint for motivating management and driving the value creation process.


  • Pre-acquisition due diligence of the target company’s management
  • Who you are getting? Do they have the ability to execute your investment thesis?
  • Identify where talent gaps and untapped talent assets exist
  • How they operate as a team
  • How to work best with them post-deal
  • Based on deep understanding & experience in M&A deals and how to create value through management

Promote the Right Person

Whether a role is vacant and you are looking at an internal candidate OR you are simply wondering whether particular individual is ‘promotable’ to a leadership role, the basic question you need to answer is: does this individual have the runway necessary to have increased scope?

The question of ‘runway’ or ‘potential’ is a difficult one. It’s easy to evaluate people on their past or current performance, but how will they perform in new situations, with new challenges, and increased scope of responsibilities? In fact, there are specific, research-based ways to assess for potential. Kilberry’s management assessments will help you answer the question of whether an individual has what it takes. Our seasoned doctoral-level management psychologists have a valuable mix of business experience and psychological insight that drives our recommendations.


  • Promote or No-Promote recommendation
  • Is the individual ‘(X)VP-Ready’?
  • Rich insight into the individual’s ability to get the job done based on leadership capability and personal character
  • Focus is on leadership potential – not only the individual’s ability to perform now, but an insightful glimpse into future runway
  • How increased scope will affect candidate’s performance

Build a Succession Plan

Succession is one of the most important aspects of any leader’s role. Effective succession planning is a lot more than a list of names in a leader’s desk drawer. It is the disciplined process of evaluating current and future leadership needs, assessing existing talent against those needs, identifying gaps, and creating a plan to fill those gaps. Our seasoned management psychologists have led succession planning for companies ranging from Fortune 50 public companies to not for profits and professional partnerships.


  • Starts with the business strategy. What are you trying to do as an organization and what leadership needs are required as a result?
  • Succinctly identify the next generation leaders – the ones who have the right stuff
  • Deep insight into potential: A research-based perspective on an individual’s ability to scale his/her leadership
  • Identify gap areas and create a plan for cultivating succession candidates’ potential
  • Overall succession plan for the organization


Bestselling book by Richard Davis, The Intangibles of Leadership, reveals the nuances of character in extraordinary leaders.




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