Suzanne Teer, WittKieffer

 As an executive search consultant, I often work with candidates who are well suited for a given position but don’t always understand my role in assisting their candidacy. While my primary responsibility is to the client, it is an important part of my job to build a great slate of candidates and to shepherd those candidates through the entire job search process. I want candidates to shine and succeed.

Whether you are new to working with a search consultant or have some experience, this article provides some “dos” and “don’ts” to help you engage with a search consultant with success throughout each stage of the process.

Initial Inquiry

When you learn about a new leadership position, your first step should be a conversation with the search consultant. Even if you are confident it is a position that you want to apply for, slow down and reach out to schedule a call. When candidates apply for positions without talking to the search consultant, it can create an impression that you are applying without much forethought. And, more importantly, the consultant is a valuable resource that you can tap.

In your conversation with the consultant, you may learn some important insights and nuances about the position that may be helpful to you in deciding if this opportunity is a good fit for you and in preparing your application materials. In addition, the conversation gives the search consultant an opportunity to get to know you.

Suzanne provides insights into the following:

Your Resume and Cover Letter

Your LinkedIn Profile

The Phone Screen

The Internal Interview

In-person Interviews and more…

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About the Author
Suzanne Teer is a senior partner with the executive search firm WittKieffer. Based in the San Francisco Bay area, Suzanne supports leadership searches for presidents, vice presidents, provosts, deans and other key roles across all academic areas, with particular expertise in science, research-oriented and engineering-related searches as well as advancement and philanthropy searches. Her clients include top-tier research universities, independent research institutes, public regional universities and leading private universities. Suzanne brings to her search work extensive experience in fundraising within the field of education spanning top-tier research universities, academic medical centers, liberal arts colleges and independent schools.
Suzanne Teer, Senior Partner
831-621-4904 |

About WittKieffer

WittKieffer is a global executive search firm dedicated exclusively to organizations that improve quality of life in healthcare, education, the life sciences and the not-for-profit sector. Its industry-specialized consultants deliver solutions across the leadership continuum – experienced, emerging and interim – that build long-term partnerships and successful outcomes. The firm understands leadership, people who lead and the impact they have on organizations and society. Visit to learn more.


The National Association of Latino Healthcare Executives is a national organization led by Latino/Latina executive leaders of U.S. hospitals and healthcare organizations and experts in the fields of health care policy and practice. NALHE was founded in 2005 to increase senior-level Latino/Latina representation in hospitals and health systems in the United States. Our goal is to create a future workforce of highly talented Latino/Latina healthcare executives who can meet the challenge of delivering and
improving healthcare in our diverse communities. Visit to find out more.