European Cooperation: Spain and Germany Conduct an Executive Search Process Together within Talentor International

by Manto Antoniotti Solares in — March 2021
Recently at Servitalent, as Talentor Spain, we had the opportunity to collaborate closely and pleasantly with one of our partners in the network of headhunters Talentor International, Talentor Germany.We had a long conversation with Gerhard Stahler, CEO of Talentor Germany and discussed the factors that made this process successful.

Gerhard, What Are the Most Important Factors for a Successful Executive Search Process in Germany?

There is a big difference between Spanish start-ups and companies already established in the international market.

First of all, for typical Germans the most important thing at the beginning of a procurement is following the laws and regulations. Then comes the connection or relationship between both parties. In Spain they are more used to establishing the personal relationship first and then the formal part.
Culturally German candidates are generally risk averse; they tend to stay at the same company or in an economically and professionally secure environment for a long time. They are very analytical when considering a change of job opportunity, so foreign companies must offer them a reliable opportunity with the option of professional growth. They usually expect an annual salary increase.

"For typical Germans the most important thing at the beginning of a procurement is following the laws and regulations."

What Can You Tell Us from Your Experience of Searches in Spain for German Companies?

As a board member of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Germany for 8 years, I had the opportunity to work with many Spanish companies. I learned that you should not generalize the business situation in Spain as a whole. It is a country with many regions and cultures. Family companies are very different from international ones.

The business market situations in Germany and Spain are different. It is advisable for headhunters to analyze how the client company reacts in its local market and whether the conditions, especially the salary conditions, are acceptable in the German market (in my case), so that the selection process can be carried out successfully.

"I learned that you should not generalize the business situation in Spain as a whole.It is a country with many regions and cultures."

Which Positions are in Most Demand in Germany?

Technical engineering jobs are in high demand. Candidates have a lot of leverage with and constant job change if the opportunity is good.
Positions in the IT sector are highly competitive. Those in the I + D sector are not easy to find in Germany.
In the German market communication skills are very important; having an acceptable level of English is required. I had the opposite case in Spain, of a German candidate hired in a company in Barcelona who did not speak Catalan or Spanish. He had never worked abroad, but they were looking for him because he was a native German speaker and because of his high specific skills for the position, so communication skills took a back seat.

What Are the Biggest Differences You’ve Noticed Working with Spanish Companies?

The experience was very cooperative. The company gave us all its support from the beginning, listened to our recommendations regarding hiring and was open to negotiating the candidate's salary, a very important aspect.
One of the most important suggestions I made to the CEO of the Spanish company was to contact the candidate directly, explaining the opportunity they had for him and showing their interest in his candidacy, since for German candidates it is very important to have the certainty that the company is interested in them and that it is worth the risk of changing jobs. While it is true that German candidates like professionalism in the selection process, they are also looking for that personal touch from the company.

"The experience was very cooperative. "

What Was It Like for You to Work with Talentor Spain as Part of the Talentor Network?

I really appreciated the very close communication and the link we created between both partners. I appreciated that Servitalent supported my recommendations and passed them on to the client, showing my point of view as if it were a Spanish point of view, convincing the client with the best suggestions and ideas."It was a good experience and talking about it makes it even better".