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Listening to leaders

‘Life-changing’ experience in Asia helped prepare Heidrick & Struggles chief to lead a truly global organisation.

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As the CEO of the multinational executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles, Mr Kevin Kelly possesses an uncanny ability to match qualified candidates with the best careers possible. And at a time when Asia is on its rise, he aspires to be part of the dynamic change, hunting for the right executives to lead Asian organisations that are now expanding to the rest of the world. 

His interest in Asia is no mere passing fancy but one forged years ago. He was in his early 20s when a friend called from Japan and asked him if he was interested in going there to teach English.

“My life-changing moment was the time I decided to go and work in Japan,” he says. “My career in life wouldn’t be close to where it is right now if I were to stay in the United States. Without the experiences I gained in Japan and through the time I spent working in Asia, I would not have been able to be the person I am today.”

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