July 27, 2020 – Board service can be one of the most rewarding career experiences: It’s an opportunity to see firsthand how another company operates at the highest levels and to work with – and learn from – accomplished, articulate and intelligent people. Its why many leaders decide to start down the path to the boardroom. It is also why the number of qualified boardroom candidates outweigh the number of board seats available in a given year.
San Diego, CA-headquartered executive search firm Bespoke Partners recently added Matt Sharrers, chief executive officer of Sales Benchmark Index (SBI), as a new board member. Mr. Sharrers was appointed to help provide mentorship to CEO Kristie Nova as it relates to effectively scaling a professional services organization.
“I have been tracking Matt and SBI for several years and have always been impressed with Matt’s passion and incredible vision for growth,” said Ms. Nova. “We have been very deliberate in our board member selection, and Matt’s experience in effectively scaling a professional services organization makes him a truly valuable addition to our board as we march towards $50 million in revenue.”
As CEO of SBI, a leading management consulting firm exclusively focused on revenue growth, Mr. Sharrers has an impressive background in helping B2B businesses hit their revenue targets. He has established an expansive client base at SBI, working closely with private equity investors and software CEOs. In January, SBI completed a strategic investment by private equity firm CIP Capital to continue to accelerate growth. SBI has been consistently ranked on the Forbes list of America’s most admired consulting firms.
Mr. Sharrers began his career at Cintas, starting as a sales “hunter” and worked his way through sales and marketing leadership. After a decade of working in the field, he joined SBI as partner. Through his tenure, Mr. Sharrers has delivered a results-oriented approach utilizing evidence-based best practices and ultimately leading SBI through double-digit revenue growth.
“I have known Kristie and the Bespoke team for years as we have served many of the same clients,” said Mr. Sharrers. “The team has created a truly differentiated approach to serving clients which has allowed them to become a premium brand in record time. The clarity, precision and care that Bespoke provides its clients stood out to me, and I am honored to play a part in this next round of scale.”
Serving the PE Sector
Bespoke Partners is an executive search and leadership advisory firm dedicated to partnering with top private equity firms, including Thoma Bravo, Francisco Partners, Clearlake Capital, WCAS, Insight Partners, GI Partners, General Atlantic, CVC Capital Partners and TA Associates, to recruit software talent and assess and evaluate teams at every stage of the investment lifecycle, from growth equity to buyout.
Bespoke Partners assisted in the placement of Linda Buan as chief technology officer of Clearlake Capital Group-backed Provation. Ms. Buan had been serving as the company’s vice president, product development and operations. “Linda has a proven track record of high retention within her team and makes an effort to focus on developing their soft skills while putting an emphasis on mentoring and career pathing,” said Kristie Nova, CEO of Bespoke Partners.
Last year, Bespoke Partners conducted more than 100 searches; it has completed over 500 searches since inception in 2011. Its expertise includes all C-level searches, as well as board of directors and internal private equity operating partner searches. The firm’s leadership advisory expertise includes organizational due diligence as well as executive assessment and coaching. Bespoke Partners also has offices in Austin and New York City.
Providing a Diverse Slate of Candidates
Bespoke Partners has always been committed to diversity and inclusion. “We strive to provide a diverse slate of candidates to our clients,” Ms. Nova said. “Often what we find, especially within the CTO and CFO functions, is that women in C-level or No. 2 positions are far outnumbered by their male counterparts. The issue clearly starts before women are even in the position to be considered for an executive level role with less and less bubbling towards the top.”
Bespoke is a female founded and led business, and its diverse values are reflected in its company makeup. “We make a conscious effort to work with women and diverse candidates to mentor and coach them throughout career,” said Ms. Nova. “We help them with compensation negotiations, career pathing and introductions across our network. Ultimately, we want to stay in touch and build close relationships with high potential leaders to give the help that we can to get them into the roles they are aspiring for.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media