This month, IQTalent Partners celebrates seven years of business; the company was registered as an LLC on July 3rd 2009. In the last seven years, we’ve grown from the independent venture of our founders, Chris Murdock and Tom Milic, to a company of more than fifty, partnering with dozens of clients to help them build great teams across the board.
The tale of quitting one’s job to forge one’s own way and start a business has become familiar to most--but in the case of IQTalent Partners’ early years, neither of the founders did that, instead choosing to fill their nights and weekends with the second full time job of growing a company organically. The earliest clients came from Murdock’s personal network-- he had spent nearly a decade in the sourcing world and had also spoken at numerous recruiting conferences. In the first three years, business ebbed and flowed, with Murdock occasionally contracting recruiters from his personal network. “It was always very casual, like working with your best friends,” said J.R. Bautista, who was one of IQTalent Partners’ earliest employees but now works for Tesla Motors.
The flexible consultative model that IQTalent Partners offered to clients proved to be popular. Demand grew over the next few years as satisfied clients consistently referred new business. In 2012 with encouragement from his wife, Murdock decided to dedicate 100% of his time to IQTalent Partners. Soon after, he brought on Judson Lancina, the first member of what would eventually become a large research team. Lancina was initially connected to Murdock through the career center at Vanderbilt University, also the alma mater of both Murdock and Milic. After graduating from Vanderbilt, Lancina and fellow classmate Sean Hills began working with IQTalent from Nashville, using tools like Skype to communicate directly with Murdock in California.
Over the next year, Lancina and Hills worked from home, coffee shops, and basically anywhere with an internet connection. In the summer of 2013, with the addition of a few more Nashville associates, IQTalent Partners rented an office in East Nashville coworking space Center 615. In 2014, IQTalent Partners brought on David Windley, with three decades of experience in Human Resources, as President of the company. Over the next two years, the Nashville research team outgrew their office space not once, but twice, first moving to a downtown office in the L&C Tower in early 2015, and then to an even larger space in June of 2016.
Today IQTalent Partners has seasoned recruiters stationed all around the country, from the Bay Area, to Austin, TX, to Cleveland, OH. However, the largest portion of the firm by far is the Nashville office, which now has over forty Research Associates-- nicknamed NERDs (Nashville Executive Research Division) working with dozens of clients. Many of the NERDs are new to recruiting, and bring to the table a diverse set of experiences from academic research, customer service, and sales. Above all, NERDs are relentlessly curious and creative, benefiting not only from their backgrounds but also from an intensive training process that standardizes the process of building a top-quality pipeline through sourcing
One way we measure the quality of work at IQTalent Partners is through growth of our client base--the vast majority of our clients are referrals, with very little dedicated to business development. As IQTalent Partners celebrates its seventh birthday this week, we look forward to continuing our efforts to match great talent with great companies.