How did institutional funds selling change in 2020?

What personalities will be in the highest demand in 2021?

The efforts made by the management companies and by the Buy Side to adapt will not revert to the way things were.

We recognise that we must add more value, both for efficiency and quality of life, which will involve developing and adapting to this model through skills training (e.g. remote communication).

The “imposition” of teleworking during the lockdown period has caused the way of relating between the buy side and the sell side to change. This period has been a brake on the acquisition of new clients since they have preferred to trust existing relationships, and they have been more reluctant to learn about new alternatives, therefore, professionals able to develop close and trustworthy relationships take on special value.

Secondly, within the commercial activity itself, we have also observed that the technical component of the sale (product) and the general technical knowledge (market) on behalf of the sales professional is something that will be decisive in the post-Covid period - even more so than it already is.

Future commercial activity will be a mix between remote and face-to-face working. Likewise, and as a critical point, it will be necessary to have professionals who are capable of developing a relationship of trust and closeness remotely, and those who can reinvent their relationship with clients to be able to achieve more impact and higher quality in other ways.

You can't flood customers with webinars!

Emiliano Sacristán
Partner, Spain

First published in the Spanish edition of  Funds Society Magazine, December 2020.


Richard Lipstein
Partner, USA

While the majority of jobs are found directly through networking, developing and maintaining relationships with executive search firms and recruiters remains an integral part of managing a career.

What I hope to accomplish here is to describe how best you can work with these professionals to successfully accomplish both your job search and career management strategy.

Recruiters have wide and broad access to the market and compensation information, trends, tips and connections in addition to specific jobs.

There are two types of executive recruiters – those who work on contingency and those who do so on retainer also known as retained search consultants. A contingency recruiter earns a fee only when the client hires someone they have introduced.  A retained search consultant, on the other hand, is paid in advance to conduct a search.

There is a vast difference in methodology between contingency and retained recruiters.  The search consultant typically has an exclusive arrangement with the client to fill the position and takes a longer time to complete the placement using a more detailed process and methodology.

The contingency recruiter will work the process a lot quicker and most probably deliver more candidates to increase the odds of making a placement.  They can introduce a candidate to numerous clients at the same time while a search consultant can only introduce a candidate to their retained client during the course of a specific search.

Although the best recruiters will provide considerable support to those with whom they are working, whether retained or contingency, remember that both types of recruiters work for the client not the candidate.

A retained recruiter is more likely than a contingency recruiter to have the following:

Contingency recruiters can be very effective in some circumstances, of course, particularly when the position is at a lower seniority and compensation level. Retained search consultants, on the other hand, tend to work on more senior and higher paid positions.

Both types of recruiters look for the most appropriate candidates with a background that closely fits the needs of a particular search assignment so someone looking to change careers or move laterally would likely not be appropriate during a particular assignment.

Tips for working with recruiters:

Make it easy for recruiters to find you by doing the following:

When a recruiter calls, ask key questions (remember, you should interview the recruiter too!) such as, among others, how well do they know the client, the depth of their relationship with the company and their experience filling similar positions.

Be honest, responsive and courteous (let the recruiter know of issues and who else will be involved in the decision, for instance) and never continue the process if you are not interested in the position (as opposed to seeing how far along you will go in that process).

Be decisive – before an offer comes, be prepared to accept or decline. 

Trust the recruiter particularly as it relates to managing the interview process and how you compare to other candidates under consideration. Be decisive – once again, before an offer comes, be prepared to accept or decline.  If the process continues past your point of interest it will damage your relationship with the recruiter as well as their relationship with client. Finally, let the recruiter negotiate the compensation package if necessary.

The most important thing I can recommend for those who want to develop and maintain long-term relationships with specific recruiters is keep in regular touch with them after you’ve landed the job and serve as a source on other searches.

Recruiters will love you if you help them on other searches and will be very beneficial to the success of your career!

Friisberg Network Advisory | FNA study finds COVID-19 is changing our networking habits.

Based on recent client consultations on Organizational Development, conducted by our team of experts, including Zoltan Kadar Friisberg Hungary’s Senior Consultant, and our special advisers at BondWeaver, the following clear trends were observed as changes within organizational networks due to Covid-19:


This has been on the rise within organizations due to the onset of the pandemic, as well as the ensuing economic recession/crisis. It can be seen through the change in communication patterns – in particular there is a higher level of “noise” within the networks as people try to gather information about the company and their tasks from multiple sources. On the one hand this information drought perpetuates the uncertainty of employees, and on the other the effort invested in gathering necessary information results in less energy remaining for work-related tasks.

New ‘key’ people

These are appearing within an organization. This is noticeable throughout unstable situations or as working remotely becomes the norm long-term when new skills and competences are required as well as a greater degree of flexibility. This enables some people to become key players, while others can lose such roles. In such new situations it is important for organizations to identify the key players who managers and colleagues can rely on (such as experts, information brokers, opinion leaders, etc.).

Relationships become more diluted

In the absence of regular physical contact, even those groups with established strong, trusting networks are diluted. Those with weaker links get fragmented / break up, typically cliques of 2-3 people emerge and/or some people break off from the group losing their relationship with the community altogether. This tendency has a clear negative impact on the efficiency of work (numerous studies show that the foundation of efficient work is mutual trust between parties), so leaders have to pay particular attention to strengthening the network of trust and maintaining the personal wellbeing of their subordinates.

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