Media and Telecommunications Conglomerate - Cable TV, Broadcast Television, Newspaper Publishing, MSO/Telco/ISP and Digital Media Holdings in domestic and international markets.
President & General Manager (GM)
Based - St. Thomas - U.S.V.I.
FMS OIC - Tony Filson - Filcro Media Staffing in New York, NY
Reporting to - Incumbent GM and CFO in St. Thomas, USVI
Client - The company's operations upon retaining Filcro Media Staffing were in Belize, British Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Martin, Sint Maarten, U.S. Virgin Islands and France.
Media holdings include - local and long distance services, mobile telephone companies, Internet access providers, cable television companies/NETS, MSO offering quad-play, business telecommunications systems and a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper. Management offices are in West Palm Beach, Florida, and headquarters in Christiansted, St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands.
The company employed more than 1,400 people at the time and is one of the largest private employers in Belize and the second largest private employer in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The company was previously owned by Jeffrey Prosser, ICC's Chairman, President & CEO.
Executive Search - President and General Manager – GM
Client Situation - A search committee was formed consisting of the senior most HR executive, the current GM and the CFO of the parent company to identify a change agent. An executive who could bring about operational consolidation to lower OPEX, enhance monetization and institute financial reporting to keep the parent company and the board aware day-to-day operations.
Executive Search Committee (ESC) Member Industry and Sector inclusion:
TV Station Groups, TV Network Affiliates
Telecommunications - Telephone and ISP
TV Production Services & Operations
Integrated Business Services
The (ESC) identified Filcro Media Staffing (FMS) and Tony Filson (TF) functioning as Officer in Charge of Search. Human Resources conducted the identification effort to identify the proper search firm.
Filcro Media Staffing is Retained
The Filcro Media Staffing Officer in Charge of the Search worked initially with HR and the current GM to establish a consensus of the desired goals on business, technical and creative levels. The client, as an MSO provider and OTA CBS Network Affiliate, had many areas where revenue could be optimized under the proper leadership.
Filcro Media Staffing was provided with technical, strategic, operational, organizational, financial, cultural and creative overviews requested to evaluate all hard and soft assets as they relate(d) to the skills and experience required of the new GM. This information was invaluable in garnering an understanding of their unique and positive culture. This particular GM position with broad management responsibilities across multiple media platforms and media businesses was unique
The current GM and HR Director had very clear “ideals” and goals for the varied media assets. Filcro Media Staffing having extensive experience recruiting for TV Station and Station Group GM’s was able to provide clear and assuring guidance while bringing the GM executive search to fruition. Knowing we would have to relocate a GM from the United States, Filcro Media Staffing’s recruitment experience was instrumental in meeting the aggressive cadence set by ownership. Tony Filson utilized experience from other similar searches so the HR Director could gain internal consensus to move forward with universe compilation based on five specific locations to recruit out of. These DMA's offered an "ideal" if the proper GM could be attracted.
Establishing a hierarchy of desired skill sets, current culture and industry experience to proceed with universe compilation and tiering placed company cultural issues at an unusually high-standing. Real leadership and mentoring skills would be essential in an environment that has a history of optimizing human resources. The success of this search would ultimately be determined by a multitude of mentoring and soft skills that were equally as important as the type of change management required in TV Network Sales, MSO Operations and integrating and monetizing the newspaper holdings.
Filcro Media Staffing was very fortunate to have such vocal, articulate and open input from HR and the current GM. The search was to be conducted as if we were looking for a “parent” who could gently and intelligently lead a broadcasting network to the next level of growth on multiple platforms.
Due to geographic issues, the search offered many challenges. An executive had to be identified that could function with limited current network sales infrastructure until he or she could establish the entire front and back-office Network sales function in an environment where it never existed before. With the exception of current print advertising resources that were being utilized to sell TV advertising, a sales team was never dedicated to OTA or MSO ad sales. The monetization and integration of TV, MSO and Print would be challenging.
Challenges facing the new General Manager (GM)
Mentoring based on limited TV and Telecom populations
Ad Sales Planning, Sale Operations, and Budgeting
MSO and OTA Broadcast TV Network Synergy
Local and National Legislative Awareness
Financial Management and Budget Controls
External Revenue Partnerships
Programming and Production Standards
TV Network Affiliate Relations with CBS
Establishing Nontraditional Revenue Streams
The Filcro Media Staffing Solution
Filcro Media Staffing proceeded to Identify "GM’s" with a proven record of success in building and enhancing hard and soft assets in similar markets with comparable assets. The ecology of the TV Network/Station was unique as the parent company spared no expense on infrastructure. Production and Post assets were considerably above the mean for similar networks. Therefore, a person capable of capitalizing on this strength to develop and enhance other areas of concern would be ideal.
An executive capable of focusing on sales management team development and sales infrastructure was essential. The client base and advertising agencies had to witness a difference in the way programming offered advertising opportunities that had not been available before. Building a credible and effective broadcast sales infrastructure that enhanced the platforms was critical.
Filcro Media Staffing recognized that travel, leisure, sports and other areas were not capitalized on yet and great room was left for monetization. This awareness was utilized during the search to help attract the proper GM who could work creatively with TV producers, advertising agencies, direct sponsors and sports organizations.
This new GM had to plan, direct and coordinate the activities of the operation and implement policies governing the functions of the various departments to include: Sales, Operations, Production, Finance, Affiliate and Community Relations. Our firm needed to identify a GM from a similar market who was accustomed to being very “hands-on”.
Establishing budgets and generating an analysis of budget Vs actuals to justify variances and create growth projections for the businesses would require strong financial acumen. In some instances, we looked to smaller station groups where working with “sister stations/companies” to maximize advertising, viewership and ancillary revenue was the norm.
The GM we would identify also had to determine added value advertising opportunities through varied programming initiatives. The Network TV Station assets and it’s geographic could offer many advantages to the proper GM. A GM who could review, negotiate and improve programming acquisition was essential. Our universe of smaller “station groups” who had allowed greater GM autonomy with regard to co-pro and programming acquisition were targeted early in the search process.
Successful GM Identified, Recruited, Attracted and Relocated
A General Manager (GM) who had functioned to date as a News Director (ND), Sales Manager (GSM), Promotions Manager, On-Air Host and Broadcast Operations Executive in both radio and TV. He was a true Renaissance Man with kind and caring demeanor.
This “hands-on” GM could lead by example and had a proven record of success in every area relevant to the proper function of a TV Station, TV Network and TV Station Group.
His ability to generate and improve revenue and increase sales in similar markets and much larger DMA’s was ideal to function as the required change agent.
Based on the diverse markets he was exposed to, his political and broadcast acumen would be utilized to their fullest. His history with Governor, Lt. Governor, Local Politicians and State Legislators and the development of programming that partnered the Station(s) was a good fit based the TV Station / Network’s intimate yet multiple international markets. Working with both the federal government and foreign government(s) on remote transmitter site construction and licensing, this experience could also come into play based on the USVI proximity to potential future international markets.
The Network having some of the most sophisticated origination, production and post facilities could also benefit from the new GM’s prior experience owning an advertising, marketing and video production company. His exposure to upscale advertising and production services to a diverse client base would fare well with the advertising agencies and local ad sales (LAS) issues he would be addressing as well as those seeking origination.
The New GM proved his ability to manage creative and technical program/development projects for new television stations in major markets and had implemented entire projects from initial budget to final build out and delivery. His licensing and technical planning acumen for cross-border microwave systems, fiber optic networks and master control, including satellite uplink and downlink systems could be vital when the Network opts to enhance their own BO&E facilities and MSO plant.
The New GM also managed two network affiliate TV stations in extremely competitive markets. He worked to develop business opportunities to diversify the company profit stream(s) as was required in the “ideal” GM of the client company. Through relationships he developed in the industry when purchasing programming he could greatly enhance the bottom line through increased savings on TV programming.
His implementation of sales strategies to include budgets and mentoring of Sales Managers and Sales Support Staff would be another “ideal” as the Network needed to establish front and back office sales infrastructure.
One of the most important factors in this search was the unique cultural fit of this candidate to the organization. This executive, along with his family made a happy transition from the West Coast to the USVI. This executive search was extremely positive for everyone involved.
Filcro Media Staffing Media and Broadcasting Executive Search
Media and broadcasting executive search firms across multiple media platforms. Tony Filson Officer in Charge of Search Filcro Media Staffing - 1985 - 2020 All Rights Reserved. http://www.ExecutiveSearch.TV Filcro Media Staffing, Inc.