Introducing our new Partner, Dr. Jennifer Barnes

Introducing our new Partner, Dr. Jennifer Barnes

We are delighted to announce that Dr Jennifer Barnes has joined the Saxton Bampfylde consulting team working across our global Higher Education and Arts & Culture practices.

Dr Barnes brings to our firm a broad and exciting range of experience from higher education, business and the arts. Most recently, she was Pro-Vice-Chancellor for International Strategy and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Cambridge, with particular responsibility for enhancing the University's global engagement. She joined Cambridge in 2008 as President of Murray Edwards College, a role she held until 2012. Prior to this, Dr Barnes was BP’s first Global Director of Education where she created international partnerships with governments, academia and industry. She is also currently a non-executive for Vestd, a high-tech company, the new University in Suffolk, and the International Board, University of Oman.

Dr Barnes took her undergraduate degree at Smith College in the USA, before further study at the Royal College of Music, and completing her PhD at the University of London. She is a leading authority on the cultural history of opera and media, and has also contributed to the field of neuroscience through research on the impact of pressure on performance. 

Stephen Bampfylde commented

“We are delighted to be welcoming a colleague of Jennifer’s calibre and experience to the firm. With our global search partners in Panorama, we advise many of the world’s leading universities and cultural institutions and recognise that Dr Barnes’s cross-sector global networks and leadership skills will be immensely valuable to our clients.”

Dr Barnes said,

“I am very much looking forward to joining Saxton Bampfylde having known them over many years. Since my days as a competitive swimmer, I have long been interested in what shapes or compromises a high-performing team. More recently, I have focused on institutions and their cultural identity, how decisions are made in complex institutions and identifying talent in new areas. I am therefore delighted to be joining a firm which will contribute to the future of key organisations and individuals around the world."


Celebrating 30 Years of Global Executive Search

Celebrating 30 Years of Global Executive Search

The Partners of Saxton Bampfylde held a summer drinks event at the V&A Museum with a broad range of friends and clients who have supported the firm since it was established in 1986. It was an evening of celebration and reflection as Chairman Stephen Bampfylde said in his speech, the world has changed significantly since the firm started with two partners to now being a business with over 80 people across the UK, 14 global Partners in Panorama and now an employee-owned business, an innovation for the sector. 



Saxton Bampfylde champions employee-ownership at No.10

Saxton Bampfylde champions employee-ownership at No.10

Saxton Bampfylde Directors, James Kempton and Imelda Napier, were delighted to accompany Deb Oxley, Chief Executive of the Employee Ownership Association (EOA) to Downing Street in June 2016 , to discuss the journey the business took to becoming employee-owned and also the business benefits of moving to this model. Celebrating its thirtieth anniversary this year, Saxton Bampfylde made the transition in 2014 to becoming employee-owned and under this structure has an elected Trustee body of six elected Partners and an independent Chair.  


The Morning After: EU Referendum Breakfast

The Morning After: EU Referendum Breakfast

Saxton Bampfylde teamed up with communications firm Pagefield to hold a post-referendum 'The morning after' breakfast.  The event had an incredibly strong panel comprised of the great and the good, the political cognoscenti and the city: Sir Christopher Meyer former US Ambassador, Kevin Maguire political journalist and Associate Editor of Trinity Mirror, Andrew Pierce journalist and Editor at Large for the Daily Mail and Elissa Bayer, Head of Private Clients, Investec. ITV’s Daisy McAndrew led the team through the maze of dizzying implications of the vote to leave the European Union. The panel dealt with the issues very succinctly providing a high degree of analysis to the various questions. 

It was agreed that the climate we all woke up to face this am was one of fear and uncertainty regardless of whether you were on the losing or winning team. The panel dealt with political, economic and business issues arising from today's momentous decision. The stock market falls through to the question of who will lead the country through this period of uncertainty were both covered.

An up sum of questions arising from the result:

  • Will Scotland now force a second referendum and now leave in all likelihood?
  • What will the leadership of both parties look like post referendum?
  • Will there be a re-emergence of Nick Clegg?
  • How does it actually happen? Disengaging from Europe?
  • How will it affect the economy?


Nicola Sturgeon will have a lot of thinking to do. The Opinion of the panel was that in general she would not jump to bring one forward quickly. She would be under pressure not to from other European countries where there are similar political schisms.

The runners and riders of the Conservative leadership issue was covered by Andrew Pearce: Boris Johnson in a race to the leadership with not with Gove but possibly Theresa May who clearly has his endorsement.

The possibility of the Conservative leadership race between now and October being a bitterly fought battle between two: Boris and Gove subsided as Andrew expressed a view concerning the former's lack of popularity within the Tory ranks. No one on the panel thought a re-emergence of the Lib Dems likely.

The process through which the UK disembarks is Article 50. Sir christopher explained the mechanics of this and the timing: it won't happen over night and when it does the Uk is not in the room when the details are worked out by the remaining states. Therefore this will be a moment to watch and learn from.

Elissa talked the group through the immediate plummet of the financial and stock markets on the announcement. She explained that although these were negative and immediate the longer term would be more stable. The bigger worry was the impact unseen. -

Companies were not taken by surprise: the financial centre has been preparing and units of back office functions will move back to the continent endangering London's position as the European centre of finance. The long term effect on jobs and therefore the general economy was the more worrying and unknown bi-product of todays' momentous news.

It was an informative and enjoyable event. Altogether a good way to start a memorable day enjoyed by clients past present and future in equal portions.


Barriers to Entry: Diversity in Regulation

Barriers to Entry: Diversity in Regulation

Regulators must address many roles and challenges. It is perhaps inevitable that people concentrate on their external, market-facing tasks, but there are equally difficult and pressing internal issues for them to address, whether regarding quality, focus or the effective marshalling of scarce resources, or diversity.

Diversity and inclusion are important and increasingly high-profile subjects for all organisations, regardless of sector. Regulators have unusually visible roles to play; they have a unique opportunity to embrace diversity for their own benefit and to have a much wider-reaching influence on the markets in which they act.

Understanding, embracing and increasing diversity is not an easy task. Saxton Bampfylde has been proud to work with many of the UK’s leading regulators to help address this challenge and has advised on over 75 senior appointments in the last three years.

We recently spoke to twelve economic and professional regulators on a ‘Chatham House rule’ basis, asking each about their diversity makeup, policies and strategies, as well as looking at published data more broadly. This short report gives an overview of the challenges people are facing and what they are finding most helpful in tackling those.
 

Download the publication here

Barriers to Entry: Diversity in Regulation


Governance in Higher Education

Governance in Higher Education

Following the vote on the Higher Education Governance (Scotland) Bill this week, we think it is a suitable moment to share our observations on its potential consequences for both search processes and on the higher education sector more generally.

The Bill comes at a significant time for us as a firm as we have been closely considering the changing face of university governance in general. Our thought piece, reflecting on the make-up of university councils and how its structure, organisation and role might be forced to evolve, can be found here, Chairs thought piece - Evolve or Die.

Turning to the Scottish Bill, (whilst considering that for those in favour, it will improve university decision-making, and for those against, that there exists no major crisis of governance that needs fixing) we are left wary of its impact on the effectiveness of Scottish university governance. Further trepidation stems from the fact that two mainstream political parties firmly opposed the Bill.

Considering the processes set out in the Bill from a search perspective, we wonder whether prospective applicants of an appropriate calibre would be willing to put their heads above the parapet for chair of university court posts. Moreover, if only one candidate is identified for election, will that person be prepared to wait whilst advertising is undertaken with no guarantee of further candidates being identified and accepting a place in the election?

More generally, we wonder what its impact on the reputation and credibility of the higher education sector might be. The concept of elected members to an academic board raises issues, namely, that the size and effectiveness of the board that emerges could be reduced given the composition as set out in the legislation.

These are just a selection of our thoughts on this topic as we believe that there is much to be discussed. We are left to hope that the new legislation will not adversely affect the rich heritage and international reputation of the Scottish higher education system in the medium and long term, particularly in light of the funding pressures universities across the UK are likely to face over the foreseeable future; and we will watch to see whether there will be implications for university governance in the other parts of the UK beyond Scotland.


CFO Leadership Series with University of Chicago Booth School of Business

CFO Leadership Series with University of Chicago Booth School of Business

In partnership with the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Saxton Bampfylde recently held the first in a series of CFO leadership events looking at the increasingly strategic role being played by finance leaders and their teams. 

Guest speaking at the event was Susan Lucia Annunzio, President and CEO of the Centre for High Performance and strategic advisor to CEOs of leading global companies. Ms Annunzio is also the former Adjunct Professor of Management at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Held at the Chicago Booth European Centre in London, the session focused on the ways in which leaders can increase their ability to simplify complex strategic decisions and learn to model proactive behaviours such as confronting harsh realities, leveraging the talents of individuals, adapting quickly to chance and finding opportunities in challenging times.


Celebrating success in Scotland: one year on

Celebrating success in Scotland: one year on

Last night we kicked off the festive season in style at our second annual Winter Party, held at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh. We welcomed guests from across a broad range of organisations to a drinks reception which included an exclusive viewing of the 2015 BP Portrait Award.

The party was also the perfect occasion at which to celebrate the first anniversary of our Scotland office, which launched in Edinburgh last year. Following on from more than 29 years working with businesses across Scotland, the office has gone from strength to strength in its first year.

The Edinburgh office is headed by Peta Hay, Partner at Saxton Bampfylde, who brings senior global HR experience from Tesco and ASDA. Peta is also head of the company's global Retail and Consumer Practice and has a dedicated team working alongside her.

Peta said: “It has been a pleasure to watch the Edinburgh office flourish and bloom over the last year and it was great to get chance to celebrate its success last night. With a wealth of exciting opportunities across many sectors in Scotland we are looking to continue building on our existing position as experts in our field and supporting and developing the leaders of the future in Scotland.”


CABS Annual Conference 2015: Business School Leaders: Recruitment and retention

CABS Annual Conference 2015: Business School Leaders: Recruitment and retention

Speaking at the Chartered Association of Business Schools Annual Conference

Saxton Bampfylde was invited to speak at the CABS Annual Conference at a session entitled "Business School Leaders: Recruitment and retention". This was a lively event, bringing together Deans and aspirant Deans from across the sector who were invited to debate whether we were facing a crisis. Speaking for Saxton Bampfylde, Alex Stewart, Head of Higher Education in the company, refuted the notion of crisis but acknowledged that search for leadership was becoming increasingly challenging. The talent pool was globally shallow, not just in the UK, so demand for high quality appointments outstripped supply. Institutions were quite rightly not lowering their sights but might the time have come to be more discriminating as to the credentials required in particular circumstances? Were there instances where practitioners offered expertise which was more relevant than a research track record or traditional academic career? Should existing experience of forging business links, including internationally, be a given whatever the role? How important was evidence of successful change management given the incidence of Deans being recruited to build new structures within Schools and Faculties such as the inclusion of other disciplines alongside business and management?

In a wide ranging debate, emphasis was put on the breadth of the Dean role in the UK and therefore the need to build strong teams - which might also be a way to ensure better talent pipelines. Better opportunities at Associate Dean level to build management skills might too encourage individuals to see Deanship as an attractive proposition for which their leadership fit had been tested rather than a too daunting step. More research into the "churn" in leadership - in 2014, 1 in 5 posts was held on an acting basis and the average tenure of Deans was no more than 5 years - was seen as useful.

Alex confirmed that, in Saxton Bampfylde's view, the skills needed in Deanship, particularly those that emphasised external activity, fund raising and the ability to identify and exploit interdisciplinary opportunities, were increasingly attractive to institutions seeking to fill positions at PVC and DVC levels. Business school leaders should therefore see themselves as well positioned to move to wider leadership as well as holding roles which were increasingly pivotal within their institutions.


Aidan Kennedy recognised with 2015 AESC outstanding achievement award

Aidan Kennedy recognised with 2015 AESC outstanding achievement award

At the Annual European conference held in London, Aidan Kennedy, Partner at Saxton Bampfylde and Head of the International Development practice, was awarded the 2015 AESC European Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Search Profession. Aidan was presented with his award by Tom Daniels, AESC Board Chair. He was also a speaker at the event, chairing a panel discussion on the future of the executive search profession.

This award is presented once a year to a professional in the executive search industry in recognition of his or her outstanding contribution to the profession. Previous recipients include co-founder of Saxton Bampfylde, Anthony Saxton.

Aidan joined the firm earlier at the start of the year, bringing a long track record in executive search. He is experienced in advising organisations on management change in times of transition, and has advised on a wide range of leadership roles across financial services, private equity, regulation, professional services and NGOs.

Aidan is a former Global Chair and Executive Committee member and remains a Director on its Global Board. Chairman and Partner, Stephen Bampfylde, said: “We are delighted to see Aidan’s hard work and commitment to the industry recognised. Since he joined us at the beginning of 2015, he has quickly proven himself to be an invaluable member of the Saxton Bampfylde team, and I know that all our partners will join me in offering our congratulations.

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