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Pekarsky & Co. and the Association of Executive Search Consultants (“AESC”) Partnership

April 25, 2023

Written By: Ranju Shergill


As a member firm of the AESC (Association of Executive Search Consultants), Pekarsky & Co. are certified to meet the highest level of ethical standards and professional conduct in the global executive search and leadership profession. Our firm’s procedures, processes, systems, and financials have been evaluated and vetted with the same degree of rigour as that which we undertake on behalf of our clients for the candidates we put before them.


We continue to heavily invest each year through membership fees, conference attendance, educational programs, and participation in Boutique Independent Firm Forums. As with our approach to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, we don’t just throw a policy statement on our website. We walk the talk and put every member of our firm through various and ongoing educational programs on the subject, build specific processes into our search procedures, and produce relevant reporting for our clients to help them in their corporate DE&I initiatives.


In an unregulated profession such as ours, where the only thing you need to call yourself an Executive Search Professional is a telephone and the internet, our AESC affiliation demonstrates our commitment to the highest standards of governance. We are governed by AESC’s Code of Professional Practice which holds us to a very high standard when serving in the privileged role of trusted advisors to our clients. Like the CSA sticker on your household appliances, the badge of approval from AESC is meant to give comfort to the client that ours is a legitimate enterprise that has met the highest standards of governance in our profession. A challenge we face, confirmed whenever we meet with fellow AESC North American members, is that the AESC is much better recognized by organizations in countries outside of Canada. In the United States, for example, it signifies quality, trust, and ethical excellence to clients. For search firms operating in those jurisdictions, AESC membership serves as a competitive advantage to stand out from so many others who do the work poorly, at best; unethically, at worst.


As a Partner of Pekarsky & Co., I am a member of the AESC America’s Council, the governing body for all AESC firms across North and South America. Out of the 35 members of this Council, there are only 6 Canadian members. Both Adam and I participate in every conference, Boutique Independent Firm Forums, and multiple webinars. Typically, we are two of just a handful of Canadian participants in every one of these events – which always strikes us as odd given our global firm competitors, all of whom boast membership in AESC, but we never see their Canadian partners in these events. That said, they throw their big firm dollars at the conference to pay for our drinks and food, so thanks, I guess.


Most of us understand the inconsistent application of operational and governance best practices across regions where there are multiple offices of the same firm. This is why we find it particularly ironic that we rarely see our global firm competitors at these events. How comfortable would you be as a client simply assuming your Canadian office is up to speed on current learnings in our profession, changing legislation, updated systems, and recruitment trends, and upholding the ethical standards of professional conduct you expect when they don’t actually attend the events at which these critical issues are discussed and debated?


When you select an AESC member firm where participants are actively engaged in AESC learnings, not only are you receiving the very best and latest offerings from your provider, but you are contributing to your ESG mandates and compliance reporting. We encourage our clients, whether you are executives, HR leaders, or procurement leaders, to create awareness of the value of AESC for your organization and ask for AESC certification in your bids or RFPs for executive recruitment. Selecting an AESC member demonstrates and contributes towards the processes you have in place to raise your ESG rankings, and by using an AESC firm that is actively investing in itself, you’re selecting a partner committed to your success.