As one of the most high profile national governing
bodies in the country, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) had been looking for
a number of months for their new Participation Director but not being able
to make a suitable appointment, PSD Sport were retained to revitalise the
As member of the senior executive team reporting to the Chief
Executive, the Participation Director leads, develops and executes the LTA
strategy of getting more people playing tennis more often. With a budget of
over £17m from Sport England, it is one of the most high-profile functions in
Securing a candidate with an
appropriate level of leadership experience, intellect, gravitas and
innovation was going to be a significant challenge. These attributes were
essential to allow the post holder to question, evolve and grow the delivery
mechanisms of the sport of tennis across a diverse range of local, regional
and national stakeholders.
The organisation wanted to take a more
insight, product and commercial approach to the participation agenda,
utilising insight, data segmentation and innovation to address the challenges
the sport faced.
The LTA were very open-minded about the sector these
could be transferred from, so a hybrid executive search & advertised
selection methodology was agreed. It allowed us to cast a very wide net
over a diverse range of sectors including FMCG, pharmaceuticals, financial
services, consumer technology, retail, aerospace and travel.
also offered transparency to the process with the role advertised widely
in the national press.
In addition to managing the advert
response, proactive approaches were made to candidates from the sectors
above. These initial approaches highlighted the opportunity, the reason
for the role, the challenges the LTA faced but perhaps most importantly
for candidates from outside the sector, how their skills and
experience was relevant and transferable.
This part of the
process was incredibly intensive in time and detail, ensuring the
right candidates were in approached in a way that reflected the
values of the LTA.
Over 100 candidates were assessed as part of
the process, with 25 being invited to a face to face interview with
the PSD Sport team.
These formal interviews followed numerous
phone conversations and were competency based assessments. Candidates
were reviewed against not only the quantifiable criteria in the
candidate briefing document, but also leadership & communication style
and gravitas, along with the taking of on & off the record
This number allowed candidates from all sectors to be
personally met, interviewed and assessed with 6 being presented as the
shortlist to the LTA.
Having been through
interviews & assessment with PSD, the following stages were with the
LTA, comprising of interviews with the executive team and then
presentation to the executive Board.
The LTA were delighted to
secure their first choice candidate, Alastair Marks.
was delivered on time, with excellent feedback from not only the LTA,
but also the candidate and other stakeholders involved. This role was
the first of a number of roles we have successfully partnered with the
LTA to recruit and we continue to enjoy an excellent business
relationship with those involved