Nike Inc. is a global sports footwear, apparel and equipment manufacturer and retailer, whose declared mission is ‘To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world’.
In 2012, as part of its employee training and development programme, Nike launched NikeU, an online learning platform aimed at boosting skills and capabilities in areas such as merchandising, retail, management and leadership.
As NikeU courses were translated and taken up by Nike employees and managers across the world, Nike needed to appoint a NikeU talent development director in Europe – but it also had bigger plans for this appointee, requiring that he or she step up to a global talent direction role at its US headquarters in Portland within 12-18 months.
The candidate had to be technically expert – seen both internally and externally as a thought leader. At the same time, the candidate would need to have the potential to operate at a global leadership level, but still be willing to spend a year or more in a regional capacity before moving to the USA. In short, he or she needed to be expert, have high potential, and be globally mobile – a tough set of requirements.
What we did
We conducted a thorough international search that covered Europe, Asia and the USA. We assessed all candidates rigorously, gaining insight into not only their technical skills, but also their leadership style and behaviour, and how these would play in both European and American settings. A detailed assessment of each candidate was presented to Nike.
From a shortlist it described as ‘exceptionally strong’, Nike appointed a candidate that ‘ticked all the boxes’ – she was expert, high potential and mobile, and was a good fit with Nike’s culture. The client said it was ‘delighted’ with both the process and the outcome.