How To Choose The Right Team For The Deal

At a CRITICAL MOMENT in the life of a business, the PEOPLE WHO LEAD must be CAREFULLY CHOSEN …


Ruth Curran, Managing Partner of MERC Partners, Ireland’s leading executive search and leadership consulting firm, recently spoke at The Gloss Magazine’s “The Art Of The Deal” Investment Dinner about the role the right team can play in an organisation’s journey to success and how to go about assembling the best team for the deal.

Every business is started by someone who has decided they want to be in control of their own destiny. When that business comes to be invested in, or partnered with or acquired, there’s a somewhat similar consideration at play. Investors who buy into a business are certainly buying into its offering and its track record, but the foremost consideration in their minds will always be its people.

While the art of the deal may have many elements to it, trust and confidence in the leadership team is absolutely critical. The responsibility for a business’s reputation and credibility, for how it is valued and perceived, lies squarely in the hands of its leadership team. So if investing in a business is primarily about investing in people, it is also fundamentally about investing in their future capacity. Who are the team and what do they, both individually and collectively, offer? Are their skillsets the best match for the challenges ahead? What capabilities are missing and which could be improved on? These are questions that should be addressed at the negotiating table.

If leadership can be seen as the ability to bring people on a journey it must also be understood as the ability to ensure the people travelling alongside participate and contribute to that journey. A strong leadership team isn’t something that adds strength to your position, it is your position of strength.

What’s really interesting about all of this is what happens when a management team really does start to work collectively. What you actually begin to see is a structure where individual leadership becomes less rather than more prominent – when a team is working well together it is also leading well together. Your team is the most valuable asset you’ll bring to the table in any negotiation. The more you understand them, the more you invest in them, and the closer you work with them, the stronger your proposition and the greater your chance will be that you’ll walk away with the deal you want, the way you want it.

Ruth Curran is Managing Partner of MERC Partners. For further information on executive search, please visit or call 01 206 6700.

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