Meet the Team: An interview with Millar Cameron’s Senior Partner Tom Jeffes
We sat down with Tom Jeffes to find out what led him to a career in executive search and to discuss how Millar Cameron has changed in the ten years since he joined.
TOM’S ROLE AS SENIOR PARTNER
1. What’s your current role at Millar Cameron?
I am a Senior Partner, responsible for the development of several key sectors, including international development, food & agriculture, technology and finance. I’m also still very active in supporting our clients with specific search projects.
Alongside this I help in the design and implementation of our business process development and growth strategy, identifying areas to develop new sectors and products, to enable Millar Cameron to support more clients and candidates.
2. Why executive search? What led you to a career in this space?
I have been with Millar Cameron since graduating from Reading University in 2012.
While I was interested in executive search and was aware I had the appropriate skills to potentially be successful in the industry, it was Millar Cameron that gave me the confidence to know it was the right sector for me.
3. You recently celebrated your ten-year anniversary, having joined Millar Cameron’s Graduate Scheme. What has changed most about your work over this period?
My role has changed hugely – that’s one of the reasons I have stayed! It has provided an environment for continued career and personal development.
Beyond purely the personal perspective, Millar Cameron’s sector knowledge and depth of networks has been transformed. When I first joined, we had just committed to focusing on the African continent. We now have 10 years of investing in our knowledge base and network.
MILLAR CAMERON'S CULTURE AND ETHOS
4. What made you choose Millar Cameron?
I interviewed with various executive search firms before joining Millar Cameron, and what really stood out about them was the seriousness of what they were doing and the sincerity of their approach. Every client, candidate and process needed the highest level of service and the methodology was as important as the outcome.
5. Millar Cameron is unique in its passion for and focus on roles in sub-Saharan Africa and emerging markets. Do you have a tie to these countries?
Prior to joining Millar Cameron, I had no connection or experience of Africa, however despite this it was Millar Cameron’s focus on Africa which made me apply.
Since then, my professional career to date has been exclusively connected to Africa and I have been fortunate enough to have travelled there regularly. I love the energy, ambition, optimism, creativity and dynamism you find across the continent.
6. Recruiting for senior management, director and C-suite positions requires a unique skill set. How do you prepare your candidates for the recruitment process at this level?
Search and recruitment processes are broadly similar wherever you are. However, the potential and growth trajectory that the continent is experiencing needs to be matched by its business leaders.
While technical skills vary from role to role, the ambition and ability to operate in this environment is a universal component, which I personally enjoy assessing in our candidates.
MILLAR CAMERON’S IMPACT IN AFRICA
7. Is there any one single placement which you are most proud of? Or feel has had the greatest impact on the communities you are so passionate about?
This is a really difficult question to answer! We are exceptionally fortunate with our client base and I think we would run out of time if I were to list them all.
Instead I can say I am most proud of launching our Development practice in 2014. We have gone on to work with some of the most impactful INGO’s, development and impact investors, PPP, foundations and for purpose and profit businesses.