• Sector: Medical Devices
  • Function: Commercial & General Management
  • Share:


Fraser Dove International partnered with an innovative medical device organisation specialising in the development of healthier alternatives to traditional cigarettes. Millions of smokers around the world are on their way towards a healthier future having switched to their smoke-free products.

Our client was undergoing a monumental shift, pivoting away from manufacturing traditional, tobacco cigarettes to smoke-free alternatives. There was a degree of hostility between the stakeholders of the cigarette manufacturer and the scientists tasked with inventing the products which would deliver their vision. Communication was almost nonexistent between the two branches and there was confusion regarding how to market their product.

Our client was urgently seeking a Global Head of Business Development to act as a facilitator between the two divisions. The talented leader would have the ability to grasp scientific research and translate this into a honed business strategy for both stakeholders and customers to comprehend. Since our client was not a traditional medical device organisation, having an open-mind was imperative.

Solution: Executive Search

Executive Search helps clients identify and secure exceptional leaders who can transform their value chain operations, unlock hidden revenue and save patient lives. Our partner-delivered executive search solution does all this in just nine weeks from briefing to offer of acceptance; without sacrificing the quality and dedication that boutique executive search firms are famed for.  It combines traditional executive search techniques – headhunting, networking and talent mapping – with leading-edge search methodologies to supplement our extensive talent networks.

1) Discovery Briefing:

The first step in the Executive Search Process – the discovery briefing – enables us to 1) clarify our clients market offering, their mission, values and culture and 2) define the core requirements of the role. This then leads to the creation of a Search Matrix – a document outlining the skills, experience and competencies essential for success.

The Search Matrix is usually used in conjunction with the job description to qualify candidates for cultural and technical fit. In this case, however, the client had not signed off on an official job description, which meant that the Search Matrix effectively became the job description.

2) Talent Mapping:

Fraser Dove’s in-house research team undertook a talent mapping exercise to develop a robust talent pool of leaders with the ability to translate scientific research into business strategy. Talent mapping reduces lead times, providing an initial ‘focus’ for the search while ensuring its geographic scope is sufficient to headhunt high-impact talent.

3) Qualify & Influence:

The Assignment Lead – George Steere – conducted a competency and technical based qualification assessment to identify high-calibre talent. After speaking closely with the client to identify their needs and requirements, George delivered a shortlist of six candidates. Our client interviewed each one, but after meeting them decided that they needed to up the ante with a more senior candidate. George resumed the search, looking for a resilient candidate with a combination of scientific and business experience. It was challenging to entice life science leaders to work for an organisation that wasn’t a traditional life science organisation. Despite this, George delivered another shortlist, which resulted in our client having to choose between three exceptional leaders.

Fraser Dove managed the entire candidate-side interview process, from scheduling interviews on behalf of our client to post-interview feedback and offer negotiation.


Our client was delighted with the final candidate and praised George for his interpretation of what they desired. The complexity of the ideal candidate and the search is a testament to Fraser Dove’s ability to deliver high-calibre talent. The outstanding candidate not only had an extensive combination of knowledge and experience in different industries but also had fresh business and branding strategies. Her drive and strategic thinking resulted in the organisation obtaining FDA approval and marketing multiple products successfully not long after she took up the position.


George not only helped the client to secure a monumental leader, but also successfully negotiated a salary $100,000 over the original budget for the candidate. The candidate was so delighted and appreciative of George’s help that she personally sent him a thank you card.



How we work

To find, qualify and shortlist the very best life science talent - high-achievers with the right mix of skills, experience, qualifications and competencies to not just excel in the role but ensure a good cultural fit - we must first understand our client’s business, their mission, values and culture.

Find out more

Got a question?

Get in touch

For more information about our search success stories, please complete the form below or call us on +44 (0)203 355 7050.