CEO and President at TurningPoint Executive Search
Industry: Executive Search, Recruiting
Summary: Ken Schmitt has been recruiting for 20 years. A San Diego native, he grew up in an entrepreneurial household with a father who was a Jack in the Box franchisee for 25 years, and a mother who left the accounting world to become a real estate agent.
Prior to entering the Executive Search industry, Ken spent more than 5 years with Enterprise Rent a Car. Earning 3 promotions and opening 2 offices along the way, Ken worked in San Diego and Orange County, managing teams from 5-15 professionals.
In 1998, he answered an ad in the newspaper for a recruiting job and never looked back. After spending 9 years working for a local boutique firm, a large regional firm and one of the world’s largest Executive Search firms, Heidrick & Struggles, he launched TurningPoint Executive Search in 2007 and now employs 7 professionals in a 100% remote work environment.
In 2016 and 2017, TurningPoint was ranked one of the Top 150 Fastest Growing Private Companies in San Diego (SDBJ). Ken and his team at TurningPoint have placed nearly 400 of the nation’s leading sales, marketing and operations professionals, partnering with national clients across numerous industries such as tech, software, manufacturing, distribution, consumer products, professional and financial services, healthcare, life sciences, and hospitality. The team at TurningPoint takes a high touch, concierge-style approach to placing first-class talent, in a variety of business structures including privately held, venture-backed start-up, private equity owned, early stage and mature, family-owned businesses.
Ken is also the Founder and CEO of the Sales & Marketing Leadership Alliance (SMLA), which he launched in 2011, and the annual Sales & Marketing Leader of the Year Awards (SMLYs). With chapters in San Diego and Orange County, and supporting over 120 members, the SMLA is a professional membership organization committed to providing peer-2-peer networking and professional development to the region’s sales and marketing leaders. Likewise, the SMLY Awards showcase San Diego’s top performing, and most well-rounded sales & marketing leaders
An avid user of social media to identify top talent, build his professional community, and brand his business, Ken maintains one of Southern California’s largest LinkedIn networks and a profile that ranks in the top 1% of all users.
Ken serves as an Executive Board Member of San Diego Sports Innovators (SDSI), and HR Café (formerly San Diego HR Roundtable), and is an Advisory Board member of the American Marketing Association (AMA), San Diego chapter, and the American Association of Inside Sales Professionals (AAISP). Ken earned his BSBA in Economics from the University of San Diego and is a former board member of USD’s School of Business Alumni Association.
Board Memberships: Advisory Board Member- San Diego American Marketing Association; Board Member, San Diego Sports Innovators; Executive Board Member, Junior Achievement of San Diego; Past Board Member- San Diego Film Festival
Who is your target customer? TurningPoint is the executive recruiting firm of choice for Sales, Marketing, and Operations professionals. Our clients are based in Southern California, and while we work a great deal with the technology, manufacturing, distribution and software space, we recruit nationally across all industries and company sizes.
Who is your primary contact? We work directly with the hiring team and C-suite, including business owners, CEOs, VPs of Sales and/or Marketing and VPs of Human Resources.
What sets you apart from the competition? We provide our clients with access to untapped talent! Accessibility is our #1 Core Value and we are committed to serving as a resource to our clients and candidates. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, our Executive Search practice offers a unique, holistic and customized approach to recruiting sales, marketing, and operations professionals. Our goal is making long-term matches between professionals and companies, aligning their technical skills, communication style and cultural fit. Utilizing a flexible, retained fee schedule, our marketing, operations and sales recruiters employ a strategy of in-depth research, direct recruiting, sourcing and networking to attract and place world-class talent.
When you are not working, what do you like to do? Ken is married to his high school “best friend”, now a Marriage & Family Therapist and she and Ken spend their free time with their 2 kids, playing at the beach, playing baseball, watching movies and adding to their library of 500 DVDs.