Egon Zehnder vs Berg

    A history of Egon Zehnder

    Egon Zehnder is a global executive search and talent advisory firm. Founded in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1964, the firm has grown to become the fifth-largest executive firm in the world with revenues of $380m.

    When was Egon Zehnder founded

    Egon Zehnder was founded in 1964 by businessman Egon Zehnder. Zehnder was born in 1927 in Switzerland and studied economics at the University of Zurich. After completing his studies, he worked for several multinational companies before starting his own executive search firm.

    Zehnder's goal was to create a company that would help businesses find the best executive talent to help them grow and succeed. He believed that there was a need for a firm that could provide a more personalized and strategic approach to executive search.

    Early Growth and Expansion

    In the early years of the company, Egon Zehnder focused primarily on executive search for Swiss companies. However, in the 1970s, the firm began to expand its operations outside of Switzerland. The first international office was opened in Paris in 1970, followed by offices in London and Frankfurt.

    Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Egon Zehnder continued to expand its operations, opening offices in major cities around the world, including New York, Hong Kong, and Tokyo. The firm also began to offer a wider range of services, including leadership development and board consulting.

    Major Milestones

    Over the years, Egon Zehnder has achieved several major milestones. Some of the most notable include:

    • 1964: Egon Zehnder was founded in Zurich, Switzerland. This marked the beginning of a new era in the executive search industry.
    • 1978: Egon Zehnder began its international expansion, opening offices in London and Paris.
    • 1982: Egon Zehnder expanded to the United States, opening its first office in New York.
    • 1989: The firm established the Egon Zehnder International Women's Forum, which is dedicated to promoting the advancement of women in business.
    • 1994: Egon Zehnder introduced its first industry-specific practice, Egon Zehnder Financial Services, providing specialized services for banking and financial institutions.
    • 1999: Egon Zehnder launched its online platform, providing clients with digital access to its services and resources.
    • 2002: Egon Zehnder introduced its Executive Assessment and Development (EAD) service, which helps organizations evaluate and develop their senior leaders.
    • 2007: Egon Zehnder developed a Board Consulting Practice to assist organizations in improving board effectiveness.
    • 2010:  the company launched the Egon Zehnder Leadership Discovery Program, which helps organizations identify and develop future leaders.
    • 2015: Egon Zehnder was named the top executive search firm in the world by Forbes magazine.
    • 2018: Egon Zehnder launched the Egon Zehnder Digital Practice, which is focused on helping clients navigate digital transformation and find the right digital leaders.
    • 2020: In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Egon Zehnder launched a new suite of virtual services, allowing them to serve their clients remotely.


    Egon Zehnder today

    Today, Egon Zehnder has more than 68 offices in 40 countries around the world. The firm has a team of over 450 consultants who work with clients across a wide range of industries and sectors.

    Egon Zehnder's services include executive search, leadership development, board consulting, and digital transformation. The firm is committed to helping organizations find and develop the best executive talent to drive growth and success.

    Egon Zehnder has come a long way since its founding in 1964. From its humble beginnings in Switzerland, the firm has grown to become a global leader in executive search and talent advisory. With a focus on personalized and strategic approaches to talent management, Egon Zehnder is helping organizations around the world find and develop the best executive talent to drive growth and success.



    Finding A-players is exceptionally difficult and takes over 70 hours end to end. Berg Search is a talent-as-a-service partner whose sole aim is to find A-players for growth companies.

    For as little as £1,000 per month, you get access to an army of recruitment professionals who can immediately ramp up to any role you’re hiring for. 

    Find out more


    Berg vs Egon Zehnder


    Egon Zehnder is one of the 5 largest executive search firms, known colloquially as the SHREK firms. They provide a broad set of services for large multinationals which includes executive search, recruitment, and consultancy (which helps improve leadership performance).

    Their business model focuses on large corporations as the average placement costs more than $100k.

    Berg is a younger firm and therefore less well-known. The starting point of every great business.



    Both companies utilise a similar executive search approach. Egon Zehnder has a large database because of its age which means they have a larger initial list to choose from. However, despite this large list, you must wait three weeks to receive a shortlist.

    Berg has a smaller database but puts significantly more resources into each search. Using three times as many people, Berg will reach out to the market, engage passive candidates and deliver the first tailored list in less than a week.

    While Egon Zehnder focuses on hiring C-Suite for large multinationals, Berg Search has placed VP to C-level candidates at ambitious growth companies including:

    • At Metagravity, we have placed the VP Marketing, Creative Director as well as over a dozen senior engineers
    • At Quell, we have placed a Game Design Director
    • At Pathfinder, we successfully found their CEO



    Egon Zehnder has a similar fee structure to Korn Ferry, whose average placement costs $109,000.


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