Santiago Silva is our second guest of our “The Spotlight Series” and we are thrilled to have him with us today. Santiago is partner of INAC Colombia, which recently won the “INAC Global Business Exchange Award 2019” (an award dedicated to those with exceptional results regarding business exchange performance throughout the year and within the network).
Santiago has extensive experience in top human talent management, reengineering, strategy and process optimization training in the United States, as well as in Colombia. He spent 13 years working for top consulting firms in Colombia before becoming partner at Talent Partnership, INAC Colombia member firm.
Why Executive Search and If you didn’t end up in Executive Search, what would you ended up choosing instead?
I’ve always considered that building successful teams is one of the most beautiful aspects behind Executive Search. I’ve been passionate about it from a young age.
Early in life I understood the importance to develop and grow respect for teamwork. I was a boy scout and I attended a high-school that instilled love for the different professions and jobs that structure our societies. Later, throughout my career, I witnessed that the power of successful teams lies on the diversity of approaches that complement each other. Those teams are the ones that achieve different goals.
I strongly think that this is why I felt in love with this job.
I’m a builder that loves people and likes to extract the best from them. When I understood that, I found that Executive Search was the perfect job for me.
I’m currently starting a coffee farm where I’m applying the lessons learned in Executive Search. I look forward to invite my clients to taste the extraction of my best beans which will be the product of the work of my farm’s team.
Your firm has won for 2 years in a row the INAC Global Business Exchange Award. What is the secret behind such an amazing track record?
Once again, the key is teamwork. We’re a global network of more than 40 valuable firms, I consider each one of them as a key part of my team, they’re also my friends and partners. I’ll like to think of our network as members of one global and powerful firm. Also, at TalentP we like to think globally and act locally, but always thinking about us as members of something greater than ourselves.
Having advised so many clients and candidates for so many years now, what do you believe is key to building and developing long term and trustworthy professional relationships in Executive Search?
“If you do well, I do well” are the words I like to start my relationship with those who look for my services and advice. Those words are my mantra.
My job allows me to spend time with people. Every person is unique as unique is the time I get to spend sharing with them. I use that time to encourage my candidates and clients to challenge themselves, to take a different perspective at things, to motivate them and to improve and develop their skill set.
Caring for people and showing respect for their work is the way I like to build long lasting relationships.
What are your main advice for candidates that are contemplating a shift in their professional path?
Be unique, be unique, be unique…
It is really important to be sure to stay in the place in where the future of the organization is holding hands with your future, alongside with the development and enrichment of your skills and your happiness.
For those who are starting their journey in the Executive Search world, what would you say to them?
My advice for those who are starting is to differentiate from others and to start by opening their minds, their eyes and their ears.
You have helped so many finding their dream job, do you feel that they have helped you find something in life as well?
Yes. Without a doubt. The satisfaction of seeing the right person in the right position.
They’ve all helped me in my own development of skills and values, and they’ve made me a happier person. They also helped me find new candidates and clients, allowing me to constantly build and grow networks and making relationships stronger.
INAC has been part of your life for so many years now. How has this “relationship” shaped your professional and personal path/growth?
On the professional side INAC helps me with enormous backing and support internationally, also with best practices. On the personal side, INAC allowed me to get to know really special people, which have become close friends and partners.
What has been, so far, the biggest life lesson you received?
No matter how hard the path is, we have to be perseverant, always be humble and respect others as guiding values.