Strategic advisory firm MediaLink, an Ascential company (LSE: ASCL.L), today announced several new senior positions across its executive search & talent development practice across the globe. The growth includes a new position for MediaLink and industry veteran Karl Spangenberg, who will now take on the role of EVP, Executive Search US from a previous position as EVP for the firm’s client service & growth practice. The move follows a series of new hires in the UK, including Gavin Presman and Tania Harwood as Executive Search Directors. The growth has tripled the headcount since September 2020, when Managing Director, EMEA Advisory & Global Search Kathleen Saxton joined MediaLink from The Lighthouse, the firm she founded, to lead both the global practice and MediaLink’s operations in Europe.
Under Saxton’s leadership, the executive search & talent development practice has seen a marked acceleration in the need for hybrid leadership talent, especially within the eCommerce, performance and digital creative arenas. Additional demand for talent advisory work has mainly come in the form of organisational design and future workplace strategic guidance as the world prepares for post lockdown reintegration. Over the last 12 months, the practice was behind some of the most high-profile CEO, CMO and other senior level searches across multiple holding companies, brands, media companies and major technology platforms.
Saxton said, “The post-pandemic world requires an entirely new caliber of leadership – one that will demonstrate a deep understanding of the human condition, insight into the different behaviors that will develop in the new era, and the hybrid craft skills required to navigate forward. We’ve spent the past year identifying those leadership behaviours, and then applying a psychology-based approach to advise, grow and shape organisations with visionary ideas. The demand for this type of advisory has skyrocketed at a time when such talent is increasingly difficult to uncover, and further building out a team who can reach them has been mission critical. Karl brings an unparalleled industry knowledge to his role, and coupled with Gavin and Tania’s deep experience in the UK media, tech and advertising space, our ability to tap into the most sophisticated C-suite network possible for our clients has never been greater.”
Spangenberg has spent the past 14 years at MediaLink, managing strategic engagements for Fortune 50 companies and early-stage clients that have required talent recruitment, organisational design, and organic and non-organic revenue growth. Prior, he was the founding sales leader for AT&T digital, connected TV, and mobile ad sales offerings. He has also been responsible for market expansion at The Atlantic, US News, Time, and BusinessWeek magazines and provided executive support for the IPOs for InfoSeek and @plan as well as for the sale of The Hotel Networks to Liberty Media.
Presman is a best-selling author on sales and negotiation and has designed and developed sales and leadership programs for many of the world’s leading media and tech businesses. He has worked for some of the UK’s brightest media stars including Bauer and Global Radio.
Harwood has over 25 years of experience in the media industry in both agencies and commercial sales, hailing from The Guardian where she led a multi-disciplined sales team, grew revenue and established 300+ client and agency relationships. She also spent 20 years in independent and full-service media agencies across the IPG, Omnicom and WPP groups.