The Firm

What are we?

Mr GreenA ’boutique’ executive search firm that can provide a level of service and access to candidates which reaches beyond that of the major recruitment firms. With the globalisation of Client companies there has been an increase in worldwide agreements with major recruitment firms. The number and complexity of these “off-limits” agreements means that the ability of the major firms to provide for a truly inclusive search is frequently curtailed. Additionally, as the size of these firms increases, much of the work on assignments is delegated to more junior staff, while the highly visible and credible Partner or Director who fronts the relationship often only actually participates in the initial and concluding stages of a search. At Stanford Lucerne we can access candidates beyond the “off-limits” divide, and every client has the dedicated attention of an experienced search consultant. The firm was established in 1995 by Madeleine Stanford. Our main areas of activity are currently: Food and Drinks Household Products Life Sciences Publishing Industrial Products Leisure/Entertainment Interactive TV and Internet Services We asked clients, candidates, and industry contacts who know us well, how best to describe Stanford Lucerne. Many responded in terms of what has been particularly important to them: Dedicated personalised approach Effective ambassadorship Geographic and industry scope Professionalism True value for time and money Some of their comments are quoted below. The only comment we make for ourselves is this:- We are retained by employers to help them recruit people into specific senior positions. Those employers pay our fees, and it is their interests we serve. But a good recruitment will only fulfil the organisational needs of the employer if it also satisfies the personal and career requirements of the new employee. So in order to work effectively for our clients, we must also serve the interests of the candidates we meet.

Dedicated personalised approach

“A really important differentiator is that on the whole you work with only one company at a time. It meant we had a 100% dedicated resource, always available to us and acting as part of my team.” MD UK, for a UK based multinational drinks company. (Client) “The key to your success is the personal rapport with client and candidate, coupled with an outstanding network.” Human Resources Director Europe for a US based global chemicals company. (Placed candidate) “The highly personal and flexible style is particularly appropriate for senior, discrete appointments. I’ve seen this becoming increasingly important, for candidates to be handled well even when they are not successful, rather than being batch-processed……” Human Resources Director, UK Building Society. “You have a vested interest in your own business, and the advice you give is proper advice, for good or bad, because you are there for the long term. You were always there for us, not just when the fees were coming in. It is a true relationship.” Partner in a Marketing Agency, (and part of a client team).


“I’ve known Madeleine Stanford for about 5 years, and found her firm to be highly professional. What sets them apart is that they are truly committed to finding the right person – not just filling a job. They are resourceful and well-networked, work with the highest integrity, and are a pleasure to work with.” Vice President Human Resources, for a US supermarket chain, previously VP HR Europe for a US based global food, drink and restaurant group. (Client) “I think you have a very particular USP to offer: you have a discreet, personal and thoughtful approach to your work that is invaluable to clients….. Your trustworthiness is critical to their confidence that your search methods will help them now and not harm them in the future.” Shortlisted candidate for a General Management role in high-tech equipment/service. “It is highly focused and targeted search, aimed at recruiting the person who fits the job and the culture, and who will thrive and flourish in the client company” European Category Director, UK-based global consumer goods organisation. “You clearly have a great database, and an interesting, innovative way of sourcing candidates, getting unusual finds. ….. The reference checking is incredibly thorough….. I was really impressed.” Placed candidate for Interim Marketing Director “Your speed, commitment, and tenacity to completion is a huge and real plus.” MD of UK-based company in the Betting and Gaming sector. (Client)

Geographic and Industry Scope

ESC online“One of the main reasons why I selected Stanford Lucerne was because of your experience across both Europe and the US, plus the language skills. And you can truly provide global coverage where it is useful to do so.” MD of UK-based company in the Betting and Gaming sector. (Client Bob casino) “I think you should make the point that you are not contracted to many organisations, and that consequently your search can be all-embracing in a way that some firms cannot do. Many of the majors have a large number of the leading global companies as current clients, and those clients are off-limits to them. Similarly I think you should make the point that as a generalist you are able to cover many sectors. Although some senior appointments must be made from within the industry, there are also many for which it is a real benefit that you can search through other industries as well.” Human Resources Director, UK Building Society.

Effective Ambassadorship

“You should shout about how you offer a more personal service to both clients and candidates; for the candidates it leaves a much more positive impression of the companies you represent.” Finance and Operations Director, Private Label manufacturing company. Shortlisted candidate. “Your knowledge of the company, and the briefing notes on the position, were excellent, showing you really understood the nuances of the culture. And you seem to have a particularly good insight into personality drivers. It was the best interview I’ve ever had, so thorough it made me think of things I hadn’t thought of before, and got under the skin in areas of confusion. It made me feel I wanted to be involved in the company that selected like that.” Placed candidate for Interim Marketing Director position by Betsson.

True Value for Time and Money

“You get an experienced consultant’s complete dedication from brief through delivery; there’s no paying for the organ grinder and getting the monkey…..” Human Resources Director, UK based drinks, leisure and hospitality group. . “Your image for me is assured quality…..” Human Resources Director, Publishing group. “You produce a really good short list. You don’t waste clients’ time with people who aren’t right.” Marketing Consultant

Madeleine Stanford


  • Lived UK, US, Canada and Ireland, speaks Spanish and French
  • Search Manager in Atlanta, online casino bonus, GA office of Boyden International
  • Director of the London office of Korn/Ferry International
  • Client Services Director for Sanders & Sidney, a leading careers consultancy
  • Founded Stanford Lucerne

Born and educated in England, Madeleine studied in Ireland where she gained a BA (Hons.) in English and Spanish from Trinity College, Dublin. She lived for 3 years in Canada and 12 years in the US before returning to England, and has travelled in most continents. Immediately before starting a career in executive search, Madeleine had worked with a small mergers and acquisitions firm, which specialised in helping ESC online to acquire companies in the US. In 1984, after a brief tenure with a small specialist firm working within the consumer packaged goods sector, she joined the Atlanta office of Boyden International as a Search Manager. (Boyden International was at that time ranked around 5th largest in the world.) In 1987 she returned to the UK and joined Korn/Ferry International, where she became a Director of the London office. (Korn/Ferry was at the time, and still is, the largest of the global search firms.) Her work there included pan-European as well as local assignments. The following sample is selected to indicate the range of market sector and function:

  • Marketing Director for a £900m department store chain, part of a £1.9 Bn Group, later promoted to Group Marketing Director;
  • Managing Director UK for a UK-based international sportswear Plc.;
  • Finance Director for a growing retail organisation that was about to go public;
  • Building Director for a home building Plc, later promoted to the Main Board;
  • Project Manager for the European headquarters of a major US-based industrial gases company, now Vice President Engineering & Manufacturing – Europe.

During the early ’90’s Madeleine moved across into careers consultancy with the leading UK firm of Sanders & Sidney. For five years she acted as Client Services Director, managing the firm’s relationship with employer organisations in consumer goods and services, retail, legal and other professional services, media and communications, oil and gas, chemicals, some industrial manufacturing, IT and other high tech industries like Leovegas. The firm was part of a European network, and she managed various large and small pan-European projects. With this solid base of experience and industry contacts, Madeleine established the firm of Stanford Lucerne in 1995. Since then she has handled search assignments in food and beverages; household products; publishing; biotechnology; industrial products; security; leisure and entertainment; new media. Again, a sample will serve to show the range:

  • Managing Director UK for a worldwide drinks company like Mr Green;
  • Vice President Marketing Europe(designate) for the beverages division of a major US-owned food and drinks company;
  • Finance Director for a growing life sciences organisation that has gone public. Commercial Director for a growing high-tech ingredients company that serves the food and healthcare markets;
  • Technical Operations Director for an international soft drinks company;
  • Human Resources Director Europe for a division of a major US household products company;
  • Publisher for a highly entrepreneurial UK-based international business magazine group;
  • Customer Relationship Marketing Controller for product range sold over Interactive TV and Internet

As the owner of Stanford Lucerne she has the luxury of putting her stamp on its general approach of no deposit bonus.

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