When the Grass is Greener (and Smaller): Making the Move to an Earlier-Stage Company

When the Grass is Greener (and Smaller): Making the Move to an Earlier-Stage Company

One of the defining characteristics of the biopharma industry is the vast range of enterprises that it contains. “Biopharma company” can mean a global organization with tens of billions of dollars in revenue, a virtual start-up with 10 employees, and everything in between. A decade ago, the larger companies, with their resources and heft, set the direction of the industry. Over the last decade, however, earlier-stage ventures have come to play a much more important role in the innovation of new therapies and the shaping of biopharma’s future. Those smaller companies thus are able to present more compelling career opportunities to top-tier biopharma leaders, leading to a much more fluid exchange of talent across the industry.

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Diversity In The Biopharma Boardroom: Moving Past Good Intentions

How can biopharma boards increase their gender diversity? Expanding the director candidate pool to just below the CEO level and to include other industries adds hundreds of qualified women, says Catalyst Advisors' Christos Richards in the April issue of Life Science Leader (subscription required).

Christos Richards

Christos Richards is a partner based in Catalyst Advisors’ Los Angeles office. Before joining Catalyst Advisors, Christos spent 15 years as the chief executive officer of a boutique healthcare executive search firm. While leading a team of nearly 20 consultants across five offices, Christos worked with clients in North America, Europe and Asia. Christos was educated in Switzerland and is fluent in German and Swiss German. He is a former member of LAVA (the Los Angeles Venture Association) and of the Leader’s Steering Committee for the American Diabetes Association in San Francisco. He is a member of the board of directors of Coherus BioSciences, a publicly traded company.

Just Don’t Call Me Late for Dinner (Title isn’t Everything)

Just Don’t Call Me Late for Dinner (Title isn’t Everything)

It’s no surprise that on a visceral level, a person’s job title is often an integral part of his or her identity. Your name, title and company are the three coordinates that uniquely position you professionally. Most people treat a title as shorthand for what someone has accomplished and what they can do—even if the reality may be otherwise. This leads to a raft of common assumptions: an EVP at one company is more senior than an SVP at another; as one moves up in one’s career, one’s title should progress accordingly.

But while those assumptions hold in the military (from where we get the idea of orderly, well-defined ranks) they don’t always make sense in the business world, where there is no standard definition of what “senior vice president” means.

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The 2017 Biopharma Industry Review and Outlook: Leadership Trumps Everything

The biopharma industry begins 2017 facing both a highly unpredictable incoming Administration and a more challenging payer-driven economic environment. In our annual Review and Outlook, we examine what is required of leaders in this environment and discuss several key talent management issues, including the ongoing shortage of board members, the need to bring greater diversity to both boardrooms and senior management, the growing importance of internal leadership development and the advantage that comes from effective restructuring, whether due to acquisition or growth

Where Will Biopharma Find 600 New Board Members?

John Archer and Todd Aghazadeh of Catalyst Advisors teamed up with Atlas Ventures' Bruce Booth to quantify the demand for biopharma board members, revisiting the analysis of two years ago. The bottom line: More than 600 new board members will be needed over the next several years, forcing the industry to cast a wider net for director candidates.

 

Biopharma: The Competition for Talent, by the Numbers

To provide some data-driven insight into the fierce competition for senior biopharma executives, Catalyst Advisors analyzed 274 publicly held biopharma firms and the changes that occurred between January 2014 and March 2016 in four critical roles: chief executive officer, chief financial officer, chief medical officer and chief commercial officer. The study, included in Hunt Scanlon's 2016 State of the Search Industry Report, sheds light on turnover, internal promotion rates and the role of Big Pharma and biopharma M&A in replenishing the talent pool.

2016 Review and Outlook: What Got You Here May Not Get You There

The biopharma industry begins 2016 with more sober capital markets, the emergence of a new class of innovative therapies, increased competition and ongoing evidence that the industry's underlying economics are unstable in the long term. In our annual Review and Outlook, we examine how these forces will be affecting the senior talent market. Investor scrutiny of boards and CEOs will increase, there will be greater focus on shareholder management and pricing will be a collective challenge for the entire C-suite.

2015 Survey of European Biopharma CEOs and Board Members

Prior to our annual industry dinner in London, we surveyed 40 CEOs and board members of European biopharma firms to assess their views on capital availability, the viability of long-term independence for biopharma firms, and the challenges of finding transformational talent. The findings of the survey address the likelihood of a considerable increase in competition for talent, a potential division between talent haves and have nots, a reluctance to prepare for long-term independence and the need to place a greater emphasis on cultural fit when hiring.

Read coverage of the survey in Pharmaceutical Executive and European Pharmaceutical Review.

2015 Review and Outlook: Digging in for the Long Haul

The biopharma industry enters 2015 with a dramatically more complex business reality, fueled by greater competition, newly empowered payers and a drug development pipeline that has shifted into a higher gear. In our annual Review and Outlook, we set forth what companies need to know when recruiting CEOs, board members and key functional executives to lead in this new environment.

Talent: The Biggest Issue In Biotech Boardrooms Today

One consequence of the strong biotech IPO market is a tremendous uptick in the demand for experienced  board directors to sit on the boards of these newly public companies. In his blog on the life sciences industry, Atlas Ventures' Bruce Booth discusses findings by John Archer and Sara Hagar that quantify the growth of that supply-demand gap.

2014 Review and Outlook: The Shift in Biopharma Leadership Dynamics


Our analysis of the senior-level talent landscape in the biopharmaceutical industry, including how new economic realities are eroding traditional boundaries in drug discovery, the challenge of finding leaders in the “transformational triangle,” the specific qualities in top demand for various leadership roles and how the rise of social networking sites has placed a greater emphasis on assessment in the search process.