Clients, Executive Search

When Is It Time to Replace C-Suite Members in European Companies with Subsidiaries in the US?

Knowing the right time to hire strategic executives for your European companies with a subsidiary in the US is just as important as knowing when to replace them. From succession and retirement to planned transitions, preparing for various circumstances can help you better navigate unexpected situations.

This guide explains specific hiring triggers for C-Suite members in a variety of circumstances. It also explores your windows of opportunity to alleviate obstacles and absences within your subsidiary.

Reasons to Replace C-Suite Members

There are several reasons why you may need to replace one or more of your subsidiary’s C-Suite executives.

These include:

  • Cultural fit: It’s essential for your executives in the United States to share or at least understand your parent company’s cultural values. If there seems to be a mismatch, or if the executive struggles to meld with your parent company, it may be time to look for a new professional.
  • Performance and productivity: Poorly performing C-Suite executives could be costly for early-stage subsidiaries. A learning period is always expected, but prolonged periods of inefficiency may require reevaluation of the talent.
  • Shifting needs: Your subsidiary may outpace its growth projections and no longer need certain C-Suite executives. On the other hand, you may need another type of executive (such as a COO or a CFO) if you did not need one before.
  • Retirement: Longstanding C-Suite executives may wish to retire after many years. You may receive notice well in advance to begin the recruitment process early.
  • Resignation: Only 22% of CEO departures are related to retirement — the rest are associated with external factors. The vast majority of CEOs only serve for one to five years, meaning an executive with longer tenure may be preparing to leave your company.
  • Market fluidity: The rapidly-adjusting US job market can be difficult to navigate for European subsidiaries. Remember: US executives can leave with little notice, sometimes as quickly as two weeks.

As a European business expanding to the US, identifying trigger points can assist with effective recruitment and succession practices.

Keep reading to uncover hiring triggers for replacing C-Suite members in your US subsidiary.

Strategies for Acquiring a New C-Suite Member

Forecasting C-Suite recruitment needs may be challenging for European companies expanding to America.

That said, several strategies are available to address turnover before or after it occurs.

You can use the following tactics to acquire top talent and seamlessly transition your US subsidiary.

Build a Succession Plan

Whether you’ve operated your subsidiary for 10 months or 10 years, a C-Suite succession plan should be a primary focus. CEOs in the competitive American market rarely remain for more than a decade, and without an efficient succession plan, their departure could leave your subsidiary in a difficult position.

You may want to customize your C-Suite succession plan to individual executives. Then, you can outline general tasks and procedures for the incumbent who takes up the torch.

You may also want to think through specific guidelines for handling media or communicating with stakeholders. A plan today leads to peace of mind tomorrow, allowing your business to maintain professional acuity.

Alexander Hughes offers succession planning and a High Flyers Search program for European subsidiaries. This prepares a future talent pipeline as well as an airtight plan for both expected and unexpected situations.

Human Capital Appraisal

Executive recruitment is a time-consuming process most European subsidiaries don’t wish to perform frequently. Ensuring the suitability of a candidate long before the interview can help to abate any fears and ensure a good fit moving forward.

The Human Capital Appraisal provided by Alexander Hughes can be helpful while preparing for a CEO succession or transition. Each service comes with many benefits, including assessments of:

  • Leadership styles
  • Team dynamics
  • Hard and soft skills
  • Corporate culture
  • Team effectiveness

The Human Capital Appraisal can also identify top talent in volatile, ambiguous, and complex industries. To shape your culture for future growth, no process could be more indispensable.

Interim Management

It may not be feasible to recruit a new C-Suite executive immediately after losing your permanent talent. This is where interim management comes into play — it bridges the gap with temporary talent.

There are several benefits to interim management:

  • Freedom and flexibility during the hiring process
  • Stabilizing business operations in times of crisis
  • Specialized skill sets for organizational changes

The Interim Management services provided by Alexander Hughes ensure a less tenuous and uncertain succession process. By closing the gap between C-Suite handoffs, you can more easily navigate the complex hiring process.

Navigating Cross-Cultural Replacements for C-Suite Executives

European companies face many challenges while expanding their business to the United States. Replacing C-Suite talent is certainly one of them — but much less when delegated to seasoned professionals.

Executive search firms are the simplest way to prepare your business for C-Suite-related recruitment challenges. Tapping into a vast pipeline of talent and acquisition resources can better protect your brand from inefficiency, loss, and frustration.

DSML Executive Search has integrated with Alexander Hughes, a renowned global executive search firm known for its outstanding performance in executive search across diverse sectors such as technology, industry, financial services, and consumer markets. Executive search is a complex process, especially within a cross-cultural context. If you are a European company looking to hire executive team members for your US subsidiary, you can get in touch with our CEO executive search firm in Chicago at +1 312 268 6166. We look forward to enhancing the capabilities of your business with bespoke recruitment services.

+1 312 268 6166