Selling Certainty

Selling Certainty

Focus on these four points when trying to attract leaders into your major project roles. You’ll find candidates are much more open to considering the move.

Major infrastructure projects landscape can be volatile, one minute a scheme is viewed as nationally critical and a week later it can be on the shelf to be reconsidered many years later. 

Changing jobs is one of the most important and stressful things you can do in life.

With HS2 north of Birmingham being pulled, how do other major programmes sell opportunities when a project’s viability is being questioned?

The media like to paint a doomsday picture, often not even remotely close to the reality of the situation. This was something that we experienced a lot in the early days of Crossrail. Make sure you can get across to candidates what is really going on versus what they are seeing in the press. 

In order to “sell certainty” to a leader you are hoping to attract you need to focus on:

1. Does it have political certainty?

Is this something that has cross party backing? Especially relevant with the election looming next year.

2. Does it have planning certainty?

If it is highly disruptive to the local community and environment, or likely to have other powerful objectors – what are the realistic odds of the project get planning permission or a DCO?

3. Does it have funding certainty?

Does it have a strong enough business case to be granted the money to complete the project?

4. Is this role actually needed?

Is this a core role embedded within the organisation or is it just an unnecessary overhead that will be the first to be cut if project finances inevitably tighten?

Leaders across Transport & Infrastructure understand the nature of the major projects landscape and that even the programmes that are looking promising can go pear shaped.

Many candidates will be willing to take calculated risks. What they really need to know to make these life changing decisions is what they are honestly going in to.

The same theory applies to companies facing tumultuous times, especially in the economic landscape we are seeing at the moment.

Selling certainty doesn’t always mean selling the dream.

What has your experience been in the past when moving between projects or companies? Have there been any standout pitches that really made you buy into a project?

Drop me an email with your experiences.

Author: Jim Newsom

Jim Newsom

Managing Director