Adam Silver, Associate Director at Ambition

Spotlight on Adam Silver, Associate Director for Business Advisory

Published on 11th August 2018

Adam joined Ambition after university and has progressed through the ranks to become Divisional Manager of the Business Advisory team.

Tell us about your career journey since joining Ambition?

I joined Ambition as a recent graduate, initially supporting the Finance & Accounting practice team with candidate generation before being promoted to a full-fledged Consultant 6 months later.

The desk I took on was stripped back to focus on Insolvency & Restructuring in London with the view to developing this market as our core advisory specialism.

Fast forward 18 months and I was promoted to Senior Consultant following a strong first full billing year and the generation of new clients, not just for myself, but also for Ambition across other business areas.

I continued to develop Ambition’s presence in the Insolvency & Restructuring market to organisations beyond London to the point in which we are now working on UK wide and some international appointments.

As the desk got busier with more business coming through from these new relationships, the need to recruit and grow a team became apparent, not just to help support this area but to also facilitate a further advisory desk in Corporate Finance. I transitioned up into a Divisional Manager role in 2016 with continual responsibility for growing out Ambition’s presence in the Professional Services advisory market UK-wide. 

In January 2019 I was appointed Associate Director of the UK Business Advisory division.

What has changed in the years that you have worked here?

Back in 2010, the business was very different in that the core focus in London was recruiting middle and back office roles in Financial Services with Professional Services only making up a headcount of 10.

We now purely focus on Professional Services with circa 30 billing recruiters operating in this sector and the shift has really helped to sell the niche specialisms that we operate in.

Dispute this change, the culture hasn’t lost its way in that it has always been a collaborative, positive and entrepreneurial environment with which to recruit in.

What is your favourite part about working for Ambition? 

I really enjoy developing new business relationships. The licence you get at Ambition to map out a market and develop new business is excellent. As long as you can put a business case together, justify it to your Manager and then have the tenacity and initiative to execute on your plan, you will be given the full support and tools required to make it happen.

The other aspect for me is the people. We have a really positive working environment because of the fact that we have people in the business who want to help each other out. Recruitment is one of those jobs that can be very up and down and so having good people around you that celebrate your wins and pick you up when needed is really important.

What moments in your time at Ambition stand out to you? 

That's a hard one but getting my promotion to Senior Consultant was a big deal for me. I had only really been in the business a short while and so to receive that level of recognition and support from both my peers and my Manager was a really great feeling.

I wasn’t our top permanent biller that year but I was recognised at our Annual end of year awards which helped confirm to me that I was in the right job and in the right business to be successful in my career.

What challenges have you had to overcome in your career and how did you get past them?

You are always challenged in this job as recruitment can be very unpredictable at times. There was a point 3-4 years into my time at Ambition where my market was really suffering and recruitment levels were way too low for it to be sustainable.

That’s when maintaining relationships with your clients becomes really important as it did eventually start to recover and we were able to kick on from there but at the time it felt very difficult and rather disheartening not being able to close much business.

Are there any valuable lessons you have learned during your time with Ambition that you could share?

Keep specialised and understand your area inside out.

I remember returning to the office on a real high from one of my first ever client meetings with an Insolvency Partner and my Manager pulled me to one side and said that the client had just called to complain that I had no clue of the market and that it was a complete waste of their time. It was a real wakeup call and gave me a kick to knuckle down and gain some credibility.

What is the best piece of leadership advice you have received throughout your career?

I’ve received a lot of great advice in my time with Ambition and this may seem a bizarre one to choose but never say anything or send an email to someone in anger!

It is amazing how misconstrued your message to someone can be when it comes from pure emotion. Buy yourself some time and put together a response that tackles the issue head on without further repercussions.

What are your predictions for the next 10 years of Ambition?

The future outlook for Ambition London feels very positive. In nearly all of our areas, we are one of the main go-to suppliers of talent to our clients and I’d like to think that we can continue with that by replicating this level of service on a national basis across all parts of the UK with existing and new clients. 

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