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Headhunter Profile: Matt Schwartz

Inside the World of a Successful Boutique Executive Search Firm

Matt Schwartz, Founder and President MJS Executive Search - TotalPicture Radio interview with Peter ClaytonMatt Schwartz

Matthew J. Schwartz is Founder, President & CEO of MJS Executive Search, a New York based boutique retained executive search firm. When I interviewed Joe Apfelbaum, the CEO and founder at Ajax Union, Joe suggested I talk with his friend Matt - which I did, and that led to this Big Picture Channel Podcast.

I like having executive recruiters on the show because there's so much confusion and misinformation regarding how recruiting actually works.How search firms and staffing agencies work. The difference between a retained and contingency search firm. I think it's valuable to have someone with Matt's experience and background to navigate these waters.

Let's face it: Anyone can call themselves a recruiter. Unlike most professions, no formal education is required, no licenses are required to become a headhunter, you can put up a web page, print up some business cards and call yourself a recruiter and start soliciting business.


Matt thanks for speaking with me.

First, tell us about your background.

What drew you to a career in executive search?

Please explain the difference between a retained executive search firm and a contingency recruiter.

Before starting your own firm you worked at Heidrick & Struggles, one of the largest executive search firms -- what are the major differences between working for one of the big firms like Heidrick, Korn Ferry,or Spencer Stewart, or Egon Zehnder, and a small boutique firm such as yours?

I'm sure business is very good, however you started your company in 2003, so you've been through some recessions - 2008-2009 for instance. I remember during the financial crisis of 2008 a lot of search firms either went out of business, or merged, or cut their rates to survive. What was your experience?

Have you ever placed someone who was unemployed?

Many boutique firms specialize in a couple of industries, you seem to conduct many searches for senior marketing roles, lots of digital, business development -- do you specialize in certain industries or C Suite roles like marketing?

Speaking about senior level marketing jobs according to MarketPro it's 18 months, according to a Spencer Stewart survey of leading U.S. consumer brand companies, it's 44 months. What factors are in play?

Stay Tuned... our interview with Matt Schwartz will air Thursday, March 9th.

Peter Clayton

About Peter Clayton

Peter Clayton, Producer/Host, is an award-winning producer/director of radio, television, documentary, video, interactive and Web-based media who has created breakthrough media for a wide array of Fortune 100 clients.


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