How to Hire a Chief of Staff

Are you ready to take your candidate search to the next level? Chiefs of Staff, or COS, serve an important role in the company. Generally, they serve as the CEO’s ‘right-hand person’ assisting in day-to-day operations and overseeing the institution’s objectives. Ordinarily, when the CEO is unavailable, they can step into this crucial leadership role to direct company operations. With this in mind, it’s easy to see why hiring a new Chief of Staff can be a daunting task. Hiring a Chief of Staff is a daunting task.

4 Actions to Take to Hire a Chief of Staff

Define Your Standards

First and foremost, it is important to define your company’s standards. This may sound like a no-brainer; however, defining your company’s goals and standards can clarify who you need and what skill set your company needs to progress successfully.

Your Chief of Staff may have to stand in for you during meetings or solve day to day problems in your company, and to do this, they need to be a solid leader. You need to be able to look at your potential candidate and know that they will lead a meeting effectively and provide insight as you would.

While they may not be directly in charge of a team, they can often be seen as your proxy, and they need to be able to lead according to that standard. List these standards and requirements in the job description to narrow and customize your search for your companies needs.

Determine When to Hire a Chief of Staff

It is no secret that the CEO of any company is usually notoriously busy. The CEO of a company that is experiencing rapid growth is the busiest one of them all. While growth is a great thing for a company, it can often cause some growing pains. One of the major ones being that the CEO is spread too thin. They are essential for most meetings and decisions to be made, but unfortunately, they cannot be everywhere.

This is where a Chief of Staff would come into play. They would operate alongside the CEO and stand-in for them as a decision-maker in certain scenarios. A Chief of Staff would also be able to be a second set of eyes on the CEO’s schedule and list of things to do. This can be essential with a rapidly expanding business, a lot is happening, and sometimes things can slip through the cracks, which can spell disaster. If your company is rapidly expanding, consider bringing on a Chief of Staff for your CEO to ease the load, and set yourselves up for success.

Use Your Professional Network

Did you know that nearly 60% of jobs are filled through your network? No, this doesn’t mean that it’s not possible to hire a candidate through a job board; however, it is more likely that you’ll be able to conduct a more customized search based on the connections you have in your network.

Hire an Executive Search Firm

At the end of the day, the role of a COS is too important to get wrong. Consult with an executive search firm that specializes in your industry. Commonly, executive search firms have tried-and-true search processes that guarantee a successful candidate placement. Additionally, recruiters have the connections, knowledge, and experience needed to ensure a smooth and successful job search and job transition. Stop wondering how to hire a chief of staff, and utilize an executive search firm to take the pressure off your shoulders and hire the perfect candidate.


Y Scouts is a purpose-based, performance-proven leadership search and development firm focused on transforming how people and organizations connect to work that matters. When you’re ready to hire a new leader, contact Y Scouts. If you are looking for your next leadership role within a purpose-driven, performance-focused organization, please join the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

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What to look for in a cpo

how to hire a chief of staff

How to Hire a Chief of Staff

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