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New York  -  July 2023

Kingsley Gate Uncovers Decision Making as the Missing Piece in Executive Hiring

New Research Reveals That 63% of Senior Executives Have Resigned or Considered Resigning Due To Frustration With Organizational Decision-Making

New York – July 17, 2023 – Kingsley Gate, a leading global, private equity-backed executive search firm, today unveiled “Bad Decisions: Why companies miss the most important factor in executive hiring”, a new report that examines decision-making as a critical and too-often-overlooked lens to identifying, onboarding and empowering leadership talent.

Despite the essential role that decision-making plays in hiring senior executives, a survey commissioned by Kingsley Gate and conducted by FT Longitude of the Financial Times Group in May and June 2023, reveals that a staggering 25% of senior executives did not explicitly discuss the topic of decision making prior to taking their current senior leadership role. Candidates who did discuss decision-making, however, are 1.4x more likely to be satisfied, not only with decision-making elements of their role, but with their jobs overall, compared to those who did not. Dissatisfied executives are prone to bear costs on their organizations in a multitude of ways.

The report’s findings unearth how leadership hiring serves as a primary method of elevating decision-making effectiveness. Respondents cited company leadership as the most influential factor in improving their organization’s decision making, followed closely by the introduction of new employees into the mix. These people-centric factors were ranked higher than technology, processes, data-analysis tools and even senior executives’ personal, self-reported impact.

“Organizations must move away from the standard surface level approach to questioning candidates about decision-making” states Umesh Ramakrishnan, chief executive officer, Kingsley Gate. “Digging deeper into significant moments of choice for candidates will uncover whether a potential hire can enhance an organization’s decision making. I’ve never seen that level of interviewing for a new candidate.”

FT Longitude connected with 400 senior executives across 13 industries and five countries in the Americas, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.

Additional key findings include:

  • Senior executives who did not discuss decision-making before taking their current roles are 30% less satisfied with their current jobs overall and 54% less satisfied with decision-making effectiveness at their companies.
  • In addition to resigning due to dissatisfaction with how decisions were made at the company, a similarly high number of executives cited resigning or considering resigning due to not feeling empowered to make good decisions.
  • Senior executives who are satisfied with decision-making effectiveness in their organization are 3.6 times more likely to report overall job satisfaction, compared to those who are not satisfied with decision making. This statistic is relatively on par with how other elements feed into employee satisfaction, such as compensation and benefits, workplace culture and career growth.
  • Only 36% of senior executives assert that their personal decision-making style aligns with the style of their organization.

Kingsley Gate’s report delivers several key learnings for organizations. First, decision making should not serve as just one element of the recruitment process; rather, it should play a central role in hiring senior executives. Taking this approach increases the likelihood that senior executives will feel satisfied in their positions overall and with their organization’s decision making process and abilities.

After establishing a slate of candidates that possess the right qualifications for a position, organizations should evaluate candidates’ decision making styles to ensure alignment with organizational style. Doing so is essential to retention, enabling senior executives to thrive, and improving an organization’s decision making.

Though, a ‘good fit’ does not necessarily mean that a candidate perfectly emulates existing decision making styles. Rather, that individual can bridge the gap between an organization’s culture today and where it wants to be tomorrow, facilitating progress. This involves respecting and challenging the decision making status quo. Clearly, there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ when it comes to making decisions, and this should be remembered by in-house talent acquisition teams and executive search firms as they build leadership teams.

Incorporating decision making into performance reviews, lessons learnt sessions and other reflective milestones would feed into a ‘virtuous upward spiral’ that improves decision making on both individual and organizational levels.

Please click this link to download “Bad Decisions: Why companies miss the most important factor in executive hiring”.

About Kingsley Gate
Kingsley Gate is a leading global, private equity-backed executive search firm that puts decision making at the center of its approach to identifying, evaluating, and selecting executive leaders. Kingsley Gate has helped thousands of organizations across all industries, functions, and geographies, hire effective, high-impact decision makers.

Headquartered in New York, the firms’ consultants have helped over 1,700 client organizations successfully hire and onboard thousands of decision-making executives across all industries, functions, and markets.

Since 2022, the firm has been backed by private equity firm Crescent Cove Partners LP. For more information, go to

Editorial contact:
Justin Goldstein
Press Record Communications
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +44 (0)516-578-8623