Client - The company's operations at time they retained FIlcro Media Staffing were in Belize, British Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Martin, Sint Maarten, U.S. Virgin Islands and France.
Media holding include: local and long distance, mobile telephone companies, Internet access providers, cable television companies, MSO offering quad-play, business telecommunications systems and a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper. Management offices are in West Palm Beach, Florida and headquarters in Christiansted, St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands.
The company employees more than 1,400 people and is one of the largest private employers in Belize and the second largest private employer in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The company was previously owned by Jeffrey Prosser, ICC's Chairman, President & CEO.
Executive Search - President and General Manager – GM
Client Situation - A search committee was formed consisting of the senior most HR executive, the current GM and the CFO of the parent company to identify a change agent who could bring about the synergy required to enhance the organizations media holdings on multiple platforms and implement sound financial reporting.
Executive Search Committee (ESC) Member Industry and Sector inclusion:
TV Station Groups, TV Network Affiliates
Telecommunications - Telephone and ISP
TV Production Services & Operations
Integrated Business Services
The (ESC) identified Filcro Media Staffing (FMS) and Tony Filson (TF) functioning as Officer in Charge of Search. Human Resources conducted the identification effort to identify the proper search firm.
Filcro Media Staffing is Retained
The Filcro Media Staffing Officer in Charge of Search worked initially with HR and the current GM to establish a consensus of the desired goals on business, technical and creative levels. The client, as an MSO provider and OTA CBS Network Affiliate had many areas where revenue could be optimized under the proper leadership.
Filcro Media Staffing was provided with technical, strategic, operational, organizational, financial, cultural and creative overviews requested to evaluate all hard and soft assets as they relate(d) to the skills and experience required of the new GM. This information was invaluable in garnering an understanding of their unique and positive culture. This GM position with broad management responsibilities across multiple media platforms and media businesses was unique
The current GM and HR Director had very clear “ideals” and goals for the varied media assets. Filcro Media Staffing having extensive experience recruiting for TV Station and Station Group GM’s was able to provide clear and assuring guidance while brining the GM executive search to fruition. Knowing we would have to relocate a GM from the United States, Filcro Media Staffing’s recruitment experience was instrumental in meeting the aggressive cadence set by ownership. Tony Filson utilized experience from other similar searches so the HR Director could gain internal consensus to move forward with universe compilation based on five specific locations to recruit out of.
Establishing a hierarchy of desired skill sets and industry experience to proceed with universe compilation and tiering placed company cultural issues at an unusually high-standing. Real leadership and mentoring skills would be essential in an environment that has a history of optimizing human resources. The success of this search would ultimately be determined by a multitude of mentoring and soft skills that were equally as important as the type of change management required in TV Network Sales, MSO Operations and to integrate and monetize the newspaper holdings.
Filcro Media Staffing was very fortunate to have such vocal, articulate and open input from HR and the current GM. The search was to be conducted as if we were looking for a “parent” who could gently and intelligently lead a broadcasting network to the next level of growth on multiple platforms.
Due to geographic issues the search offered many challenges. An executive had to be identified that could function with limited current network sales infrastructure until he or she could establish the entire front and back-office Network sales function in an environment where it never existed before with the exception of current print advertising resources that were being utilized to sell TV advertising. The management and integration of TV, MSO and Print would be challenging.
Some of the biggest challenges facing the new General Manager (GM)
Ad Sales Planning, Sale Operations and Budgeting
MSO and OTA Broadcast TV Network Synergy
Local and National Legislative Awareness
Financial Management and Budget Controls
External Revenue Partnerships - Synergies
Programming and Production Standards
TV Network Affiliate Relations with CBS
Establishing Nontraditional Revenue Streams
Solution Filcro Media Staffing proceeded to Identify "GM’s" with a proven record of success in building and enhancing hard and soft assets in similar markets with comparable assets. The ecology of the TV Network/Station was unique as the parent company spared no expense on infrastructure. Production and Post assets were considerably above the mean for similar networks. Therefor, a person capable of capitalizing on this strength to develop and enhance other areas of concern would be ideal.
An executive capable of focusing on sales management team development and sales infrastructure was essential. The client base and advertising agencies had to witness a difference in the way programming offered advertising opportunities that had not been available before. Building a credible and effective broadcast sales infrastructure that enhanced the platforms was critical. Filcro Media Staffing recognized that travel, leisure, sports and other areas were not capitalized on yet and great room was left for monetization. This awareness was utilized during the search to help attract the proper GM who could work creatively with TV producers, advertising agencies, direct sponsors and sports organizations.
This new GM had to plan, direct and coordinate the activities of the operation and implement policies governing the functions of the various departments to include: Sales, Operations, Production, Finance, Affiliate and Community Relations. Our firm needed to identify a GM from a similar market who was accustomed to being very “hands-on”.
Establishing budgets and generating analysis of budget Vs actuals to justify variances and create growth projections for the businesses would require strong financial acumen. In some instances we looked to smaller station groups where working with “sister companies” to maximize advertising, viewership and ancillary revenue was the norm.
The GM we would identify also had to determine added value advertising opportunities through varied programming initiatives. The Network TV Station assets and it’s geographic could offer many advantages to the proper GM. A GM who could review, negotiate and improve programming acquisition was essential. Our universe of smaller “station groups” who had allowed greater GM autonomy with regard to co-pro and programming acquisition were targeted early in the search process.
Successful GM Identified, Recruited, Attracted and Relocated
A General Manager who had functioned to date as a News Director, Sales Manager, Promotions Manager, On Air Host and Operations Executive in both radio and TV. He was a true Renaissance Man.
This “hands-on” GM could lead by example and had a proven record of success in every area relevant to the proper function of a TV Station, TV Network and TV Station Group.
His ability to generate and improve revenue and increase sales in similar markets and much larger DMA’s was ideal to function as the change agent required.
Based on the diverse markets his political and broadcast acumen would be utilized to their fullest and his exposure to Governor, Lt. Governor, Local Politicians and State Legislators and the development of programming that partnered the Station(s) was a good fit based the TV Station / Network’s intimate yet multiple international markets. Working with both the federal government and foreign government(s) on remote transmitter site construction and licensing, this experience could also come into play based on the USVI proximity to potential future international markets.
The Network having some of the most sophisticated production and post facilities could also benefit from the new GM’s prior experience owning an advertising, marketing and video production company. His exposure to upscale advertising and production services to a diverse client base would fare well with the advertising agencies and local ad sales (LAS) issues he would be addressing.
The New GM proved his ability to manage development projects for new television stations in major markets and had implemented entire projects from initial budget to final build out. His licensing and technical planning acumen for cross border microwave systems, fiber optic networks and master control, including satellite uplink and downlink systems could be vital when the Network opts to enhance their own BO&E facilities or the MSO plant.
The New GM also managed two network affiliate TV stations in extremely competitive markets. He worked to develop business opportunities to diversify the company profit stream(s) as was required in the “ideal” of the client company. Through relationships he developed in the industry when purchasing programming he could greatly enhance the bottom line through increased savings on programming.
His implementation of sales strategies to include budgets and mentoring of Sales Managers and Sales Support Staff would be another “ideal” as the Network needed to establish front and back office sales infrastructure that would be distinct from their other media holdings.
One of the most important factors in this search was the unique cultural fit of this candidate to the organization. This executive, along with his family made a happy transition from the West Coast to the USVI that was positive for everyone involved.
Media and broadcasting executive search firms across multiple media platforms. Tony Filson Officer in Charge of Search Filcro Media Staffing - 1985 - 2016 All Rights Reserved. http://www.ExecutiveSearch.TV Filcro Media Staffing, Inc.