The demand for alternative and high-net-worth investment professionals has offset a marked decline in the demand for sales executives and equity portfolio managers, according to a report that Russell Reynolds released today.

Besides the obvious demand for alternative, fixed-income and value fund managers, as well as financial professionals truly capable of giving wealthy investors better advice, Russell Reynolds’ "2002 Recruiting Trends in Investment Management" report also found that leadership is back in vogue.

Conducted by the executive recruiters of the firm’s investment management practice, the report found that firms are looking for people who are team players, who can navigate through all types of market cycles and who are level-headed and "seasoned’ enough to "fulfill near-term succession planning needs." Many firms are also hiring star equity buy-side analysts, ostensibly to have the talent on hand to spot money-making areas when the market turns around.

Also of note is the fact that confidence under fire has replaced creativity as managers’ key considerations when hiring new people.

Finally, the ability to reduce the bottom line also figured prominently, and bonuses and "prima donnas," are not hot topics this year, according to the report.

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