A look at the people behind the numbers in area business:


Title: Partners

Age: Cohen, 52; Taylor, 59

Chris Cohen and Don Taylor are focusing on placing candidates in nonprofit and public organizations at their new boutique firm, Minneapolis-based CohenTaylor Executive Search Services.

Cohen and Taylor said they launched their boutique retained search firm to help address disruption in the nonprofit and public sectors and in the search industry itself. Forces driving that change include the need to find new leaders to address complex issues, the retirement of baby boomers, the growing presence of multiple cultures, the rise of millennials and the increasing use of social media to find talent.

"Chris and I both wanted to be part of redefining how search work is done well for our clients and understanding better and more fully the social impact that our placements have on the community," Taylor said.

To help in that regard, CohenTaylor describes itself as the state's first executive search firm to seek certification as a sustainable business from B Lab, a global nonprofit that offers B Corporate certification to for-profit companies that meet social and environmental standards.

"It's not just a numbers game anymore," Cohen said.

Cohen and Taylor worked together at a Twin Cities executive search firm before launching their firm. Cohen, an executive recruiter since 1997, often sought insight on nonprofit recruiting from Taylor, a nonprofit executive for 30 years before moving to executive search. Both have MBA degrees from the University of St. Thomas.

Q: How will the firm give back as it seeks B corporation certification?

Taylor: One way we're thinking about our social impact is measuring around the outcome, what our leaders are doing in the community to create that social impact.

Cohen: We're talking about putting our money where our mouth is and engaging in leadership development, and supporting programs.

Q: Why should candidates or organizations work with CohenTaylor?

Cohen: Our history in this space; we're a new firm but we're not new to search.

Taylor: Our clients will say they appreciate our attention to understanding the organization and the role before we even approach the marketplace. Candidates would say our attention to communication about where they are in the process, keeping their confidence and the way we help them prepare for interviews.

Q: What are your priorities besides B certification?

Taylor: There are services around search that our clients can benefit from: succession planning, leadership development. We're looking at the ways we can grow our products and services around search that will help us be more successful with our clients.

Todd Nelson