Member criteria

Member criteria is an independent company, founded in the UK in 2000. It specialises in helping Chairmen, CEO’s and board members achieve transformation success. Also, we help experienced, talented senior independent leaders maximise their own independent portfolio careers. To help them make their own unique contributions to our client’s organisations.

What are the qualities that we look for in our very select handpicked subscribing members of

The skills, knowledge and experience needed to be a successful senior independent transformation leader, able to help shareholders, chairmen, MD’s or key board members lead a successful transformation, means this is actually a very limited group of people. To be accepted as a member of you need to be able to prove that you have what it takes. Since our inception in 2000, we have a 100% success rate with every project we have undertaken, a reputation we intend to protect.

Please read the following carefully and if you think this is for you, then the next step is to provide your CV and indeed your linkedin link, to David Pinchard, co-founder and Managing Director of the business.

1. A Love of what you do

At the start of the documentary Michael Jordan. To The Max …Michael says: “People always ask me… What’s the secret to being the best basketball player in the world? I tell them it’s simple, you first have to fall in love with the game. When you fall in love with something, practice no longer feels like practice. Work no longer feels like work. You start to live, breathe, eat and sleep the game — you become obsessed”. The same is true in any business. Until work and play become one, you will struggle to achieve anything. Nobody thrives doing something they hate.

2. Financial Independence and Resilience

This is an absolutely crucial element, for while the rewards from a project can be substantial there are often significant time gaps between projects and experience suggests as much as 18 months. Sometimes also projects can literally run back to back. But in any successful independent portfolio there is always much to do. The ‘third sector’ provides huge opportunities to ‘add value’ and ‘make a difference’ which has a lot less to do with ‘money’.

As a true senior independent you need to maintain the ability to ‘speak truth to power’ and to be able to walk away when necessary. This requires you not to be dependent on the current fee for your strategic financial stability.

3. Your Experience and Curriculum Vitae

An exceptional ‘must see’ board level CV, or, as an experienced ‘head of a department’ in a large corporate, is required. The purpose of any CV is of course to get to interview, and yours must differentiate you from the crowd with a focus on the value- add that you have achieved.

4. A Polymath dedicated to Lifetime Learning

Transformation projects impact the full spectrum of a company’s operations so a broad level of knowledge across all areas is essential. In addition, the speed of change nowadays is breath-taking. What worked five years ago may not be relevant for tomorrow. Whatever you ‘core proven skills’, you know that you need to develop those skills and search around you for what else is happening. To give you an idea of what this entails, see the library in our website index for a cross section of ‘must read’ books. And of course, our own ‘end month’ topnotch, independent members report which has been published now since the middle of 2001. The transformation sector constantly moving.

5. Unwavering Ethical Drivers.

There are all sorts of leadership ‘styles’ needed, depending on the situation. But integrity is a key element to inspire trust in you by others and to help deliver transformation success. As previously mentioned, you must be prepared to speak ‘truth to power’, even if this is likely to be unpopular with the recipient and could lead to the termination of the project.

You have a very considerable ‘duty of care’ to your clients. As one of our clients, a director of Panasonic UK, wisely about a complex transformation he was leading ‘the patient can die on the operating table’.

6. Your own Website

Whilst word of mouth from a trusted source is the best possible recommendation, we now live in a world where the web and social media are the go-to information source. While a LinkedIn profile is a hygiene factor, it cannot compare with a good personal website. The key difference is that the latter is completely under your control. This enables you to present your brand, demonstrating your unique combination of skills, experience and knowledge together with your ethos and values in the best possible way. It is also an excellent place to showcase your past projects.

The good news is that it doesn’t need to be complex or expensive to build and most of the maintenance and updating you can easily manage yourself.

Experts also abound. Our own website, through its various evolutions over time, has been managed by since 2000. They were one of our founding minority shareholders. As technology and systems have evolved Connected-UK have developed into world class, WordPress experts. Lean, always highly professional. Always passionate about their client’s success.

7. Three Great Referees.

These individuals who know you well are of course VERY important, and may often be your own personal mentors and ‘trusted advisors’. We always advise that a client ‘checks out’ a candidate’s referees, as part of their own ‘due diligence’ on you. Be assured that your personal referees are never made public, and can only be contacted with your permission.

8. Case histories.

Any potential client wants to see evidence of your ability to help a client deliver transformation success and add-value. You will need to have at least one or two ‘project case histories’ that you have been involved in. There are times when producing your successful case histories at a time of hiring can help to secure a good hiring agreement in shortlist interview with a client.

Enlightened Self Interest

While every member naturally has their own personal agenda aimed at winning a project, we can all be more successful when we find ways to help each other. This works by all members being aware of any opportunities within our own network of trusted relationships, which if not for them, can be offered to other members through Transformation-Leaders.

Next Steps

If, having read these eight points, you consider you have what it takes to be a successful independent transformation leader, and would like to take membership of this elite band a step closer, then send your CV in complete confidence to