A Filcro Media Staffing review with Tony Filson as Officer in Charge
Global Media and Telecommunications Conglomerate Cable TV, Broadcast Television, Newspaper Publishing, MSO, Telco and ISP media holdings
President General Manager (GM)
Based St. Thomas - The U.S.V.I. Officer in ChargeTony Filson - New York, NY Executive Search FirmFilcro Media Staffing New York, NY Reporting to Human Resources, the incumbent GM and CFO in St. Thomas, USVI
The company's operations are in Belize, British Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint-Martin, Sint Maarten, U.S. Virgin Islands and France and include local, long distance and cellular telephone companies, Internet access providers, cable television companies, business systems, and a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper. Management offices are in West Palm Beach, Florida and headquarters are in Christiansted, St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands.
The company employees more than 1,400 people 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
A search committee was formed consisting of the senior most Human Resources executive, the current GM and the CFO of the parent company to identify a change agent who could bring about the synergy required to enhance the organizations media holdings on multiple platforms and implement sound financial reporting. At the time of Filcro Media Staffing being engaged, there were no cross-platform synergies between any of the firm’s media holdings. One of the the objectives of the search was to identify a President /GM who could monetize the portfolio of media properties with proper modality.
Executive Search Committee (ESC) Member Industry and Sector inclusion:
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
Filcro Media Staffing Officer in Charge of Search, Tony Filson worked initially with HR and the current GM to establish a consensus of the desired goals on business, technical and creative levels.
Tony Filson 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.
The current GM and HR Director had very clear “ideals” and goals for the TV Network Filcro Media Staffing utilized documents from other similar GM, Telco, MSO and CEO leval searches so the HR Director could gain internal consensus to move forward with universe compilation based on the collaborative document drawn by the OIC.
Establishing a hierarchy of desired skill sets and industry experience to proceed with universe compilation and tiering placed cultural issues at an unusually high-standing. 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 Network sales to integrate the newspaper holdings which were well below market based on a lack of cross-platform resources.
Filcro Media Staffing was very fortunate to have verbose and articulate 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. MSO, Online, Mobile, OTA, Print and Teco all had to be monetized, this was a substantial undertaking.
Some of the biggest challenges facing the new General Manager (GM) / President
Ad Sales Planning and Budgeting Across 6 Media Platforms
MSO and OTA Network Synergy
Local and National Legislative Awareness
Financial Management and Budget Controls
External Revenue Partnerships - Synergies
Programming and Production Standards and Co-Pro Agreements
Community and Affiliate Relations
Establishing Nontraditional Revenue Streams
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 creative assets. The ecology of the Network was unique as the parent company spared no expense on infrastructure. Production and Post assets were considerably above the mean for similar networks. Therefor, 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.
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 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 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 and its 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 who had functioned to date as a News Director, Sales Manager, Promotions Manager, On Air Host and EVP Operations Executive in both radio and TV.
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 Network, Station Group or Single Station operation.
His ability to generate and improve revenue and increase sales in similar markets was ideal to function as the change agent required.
Based on the diverse markets his political and broadcast acumen would be utilized to their fullest and his exposure to Governor, Lt. Governor, Local Politicians and State Legislators and the development of programming that partnered the Station(s) was a good fit based the 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 production and post facilities could also benefit from the new GM’s 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.
The New GM proved his ability to manage development projects for new television stations in major markets and had implemented entire projects from initial budget to final build out. 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.
The New GM also managed two network affiliate stations in extremely competitive markets. He worked to develop business opportunities to diversify the company profit stream(s) as was required in the “ideal” 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 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 that would be distinct from their other media holdings. Traffic, Inventory, Sales Planning and Ideation all needed his acumen.
One of the most important factors in this search was the unique cultural, business, technical and creative fit of this candidate to the organization. This executive, along with his family made a happy transition from the West Coast to the USVI that was positive for everyone involved.
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Cable TV & MSO
Multicast & OEM
Filcro Media Staffing Media Executive Search skill set and experience designations for review