Organization: Koya Leadership Partners

Location: Chicago, IL

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About Koya Leadership Partners:

Koya is a national retained executive search firm that works exclusively with mission-driven clients, institutions of higher education, and social enterprises. Clients come to Koya—and return—for the gold standard in executive search. The executives we place are widely considered leaders in the their fields.

Koya’s commitment to mission-driven work is core to how we treat our employees. Koya is a place where employees can bring their full selves to work. Staff members are developed professionally and empowered to support the personal causes that matter most to them through resources like our Passion Project Stipend and our staff-led Community Impact Committee. We believe wholeheartedly that best-in-class service to candidates and clients can, and should, go hand in hand with being a best-in-class organization for our team.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are deeply held values at Koya. We believe diversity spans gender, race, faith, ability and sexual orientation. We strive to build diverse pools of talent in our work with clients and we track metrics on diversity as a performance outcome for our recruiters. We are proud of the results of this commitment: over one-third of the leaders we place have historically been? executives of color and over 60% women.

The Chicago Office of Koya was founded 4 years ago and is an important driver of our work nationally.   Koya has placed the CEO’s of many of Chicago’s leading institutions including the MacArthur Foundation, the Art Institute, the Adler Planetarium, Bright Pink, the Red Cross and many others.  Other key clients in the Chicago region include the Obama Foundation, the Museum of Science & Industry, the University of Chicago, Northwestern and many others. Koya’s work recruiting women and leaders of color to CEO roles was featured in a 2017 cover article in Crain’s Chicago Business.

Working at Koya:

Our team-oriented culture is one of the things we’re most proud of. We take our core values seriously and integrate them into our work, operations, and decision-making. Koya provides exceptional benefits; highlights include:

  1. All full-time employees receive four weeks of Personal Time Off (PTO) plus two additional weeks off for firm-wide closures in August and December;
  2. Koya offers 6 weeks of paid parental leave at 100% in addition to short-term disability and return-to-work benefits; and,
  3. The professional growth of individual team members is vital: we focus on matching the desires and interests of team members with the needs of the company.

The Opportunity:

Koya is currently seeking to hire a full-time Coordinator/Consultant to join our dynamic Chicago office.

This role supports the entire search cycle.  The ideal candidate must be both relationship and task oriented. From helping to manage client relationships through efficient scheduling and communication to juggling multiple projects at any given time, you must have excellent organization and multi-tasking skills to be successful. The ideal candidate is an excellent problem-solver and communicator who loves playing detective – discovering and solving potential problems before they exist, analyzing key candidate details, and providing thought leadership to search leads. You’ll also get to enjoy the immense satisfaction of seeing great people hired by amazing organizations due to the work of your team.

We have found that the most successful search professionals are excellent project managers with unparalleled persistence who are excited about working on a variety of searches and projects alongside colleagues with varying styles, experiences and background. You will work with search leads (Principals, Vice Presidents and/or Managing Directors) to ensure that clients receive the highest quality experience possible and are thrilled with the placement of the right leader but also with the service level provided every step of the way.

Your Key Responsibilities:

In your role, you’ll be both a professional curator of talent, drawing in and carefully vetting the best candidates and an operations expert, pioneering and refining team processes for finding, vetting and sharing talent.

Your responsibilities may shift search by search and could include everything from document preparation, to coordination of interview day details, writing candidate profiles and a range of other interesting and important functions. We’ll provide continuous training on the tools we use daily as well as our search process, and as you develop mastery in your role, you’ll find and create new methods for supporting searches in the most robust way possible.

We’re Looking for Someone:

  • Who works hard with a high level of personal responsibility and accountability. You’re committed to getting whatever is needed done, on time, and with a high bar for quality. You have a sense of urgency but also remain calm, especially among competing priorities.
  • With an unwavering attention to detail. You have excellent organizational skills. Typos make you cringe, and you are quick to spot formatting and grammatical errors. You like creating structure in your work.
  • With strong writing skills, including the ability to edit, format and produce cohesive, error-free search and business development documents.
  • Who is a logistics wiz. You live in the details and are always multiple steps ahead; anticipating hiccups and being well equipped to jump into action.
  • You are proactive, constantly flagging what needs to happen ahead of time
  • With exceptional relationship and interpersonal skills and a proven track record of successful client relations and customer service experience.
  • Who can manage up and anticipate needs; adjusting to different work and communication styles.
  • With the personal presence and the professional judgment required to represent Koya and its clients well in the marketplace when communicating with executive level candidates and clients.
  • With 1-5 years of professional experience who’s excited to deepen and expand their career skillset.

Hiring Process:

Koya’s hiring process for colleagues at this level is rigorous and differs from other hiring practices you may have encountered. As part of our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, Koya practices “blind recruitment” to minimize unconscious biases that can emerge through traditional résumé review.

Instead of relying on the traditional resume and cover letter to determine a candidate’s qualifications, we de-identify names during the application review process and evaluate candidates through exercises and cases. This format serves a dual purpose: it gives you a taste of our work and it gives the Koya team insight into whether you possess the skills and competencies required to be successful at our firm. It also helps preclude unconscious biases that emerge from knowing a candidate’s educational background, ethnicity, gender, or other attributes that may influence initial screening.

All candidates will be invited to:

  1. Complete a short application in lieu of a traditional cover letter;

Candidates who are selected to move forward will:

  1. Participate in a 30-minute phone interview, conducted by Abe Taleb, Vice President at Koya; and
  2. Complete a 4-hour, timed, trial assignment, designed to mimic the work of the role, which will be reviewed through a blind process to remove bias.

Finalist candidates will then be asked to meet with Koya leadership in Chicago, after which Koya will conduct reference checks. We are committed to transparency throughout this process. To give you a sense of timing, from phone interview to issued offer typically takes three to five weeks.

Where this role fits into our organization:

Koya’s organizational structure recognizes the specific roles and responsibilities of each level.

  1. Our Managing Directors
    • Contribute to organizational vision, strategy, and decisions to advance the overall vitality of the organization
    • Function as search lead for searches in portfolio
    • Set strategic direction for team/portfolio of searches
    • Are responsible for bringing new business into the organization
  2. Our Vice Presidents
    • Function as search lead for all searches in portfolio
    • Set strategic direction for team/portfolio of searches
    • Are responsible for bringing new business into the organization
    • Are responsible for candidate engagement/pool development*
    • Are responsible for client management & satisfaction
    • Set strategic direction for service
  3. Our Principals
    • Are responsible for candidate engagement/pool development*
    • Are responsible for client management & satisfaction
    • Set strategic direction for service
    • Troubleshoot difficult situations with clients
    • Are responsible for book of business and cultivating repeat business from existing clients
  4. Our Consultants
    • Tier III – Support search logistics; candidate development and engagement; client engagement and management
    • Tier II – Support search logistics; candidate development and engagement;
    • Tier 1 – Support search logistics across a portfolio of searches
  5. Our Coordinators
    • Support search logistics for multiple searches as well as provide support to a search team and/or Managing Director and their respective region

For our Chicago office, we are either looking to bring someone in at the Coordinator or Consultant I level depending on experience.

How to Apply:

Please complete the following very simple form here. Please do so by Midnight CST on Wednesday, April 4. ALL candidates will be invited to complete a set of short-answer questions after completing the form.

If you have any questions about the role, please feel free to email Abe at We look forward to getting to know you!