Sep 29, 2020 | 3 min read

Digital Industry Insight #32

The Time is Now to Raise Your Business’s Catalytic Leadership Quotient

As we approach the end of September, having come to the realization that as bad as the COVID crisis has been, the worst is likely behind us. As such, we see companies large and small rethinking the key leadership traits that are needed in this new normal. We’ve worked with many innovative and forward-thinking companies who are now viewing this as an opportunity to source impactful talent, and more importantly, upgrade their leadership quotient. We call this ‘Catalytic Leadership’, and see such leaders as critical to surviving and thriving post-COVID. Catalytic Leadership, as we have come to define it, describes a person with the capabilities and proclivity to affect positive change in an organization. They serve as a catalyst for growth, improvement or evolution. This type of leadership is never more critical than in times of crisis or chaos.

Executive search software provider Thrive conducted a study quantifying Executive Searches initiated within Q2 of this year. As you can see in the table below, the number of searches initiated in April, across almost all sectors, were off significantly when compared with a year ago – as companies hunkered down for the unknown. Yet, June was a completely different story with a significant increase in initiated searches, both compared to April – and more importantly, to the year prior. We believe businesses were proactively upgrading their leadership teams and best positioning themselves to approach a new, and still-changing business environment.


Screenshot 2020-09-28 at 10.16.53Source: Executive Search Quarterly Report | Q2 2020 (Thrive)


What this means for every company is that this is the time to reassess your leadership and talent for post-COVID. Board members need to reexamine and reevaluate their company’s C-Suite. The C-Suite needs to look at business unit leaders, and business unit leaders need to evaluate their team leaders. Some difficult decisions might have to be made – but we are now operating in a new reality, and the enterprise needs to adapt accordingly.

Within the private equity and venture capital arenas – majority financial sponsors need to reassess portfolio company and/or investment leadership. Private equity portfolio companies and Series A & B companies need to assess business function leadership and make any necessary changes to best position themselves for survival, and eventual growth. 

As for the start-up world – you only get one shot at a successful launch. The time is now to look around the room and make sure you are surrounded by the best and the brightest.

The “newest normal” remains a moving target for all of us. What is known is that any successful pivot to a post-COVID-19 business world will be led by Catalytic Leaders, and delivered upon by the loyal employees that trust and respect them.



Momenta is the leading Digital Industry retained Executive Search firm delivering impactful leadership across energy, manufacturing, smart spaces and supply chain. We have placed more than 200 leaders globally in Fortune 100’s and venture-backed startups, including digital leadership roles at Hitachi, United Technologies and Let's connect and discuss how Momenta can help you take your business to the next level.