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We have recently dealt with clients who included a requirement that a new recruit sign a broad-gauged “non-compete” agreement as a part of the hiring process, which essentially precluded the individual from working in their area of expertise for one year. In two of these assignments, which involved mid-level professionals in public and private companies, this stipulation turned the recruiting process upside-down, and the candidates ultimately did not take the job (even when the requirement was taken off the table, in one case). Typically, non-compete agreements are more often utilized by service companies and brokerage firms, as well as for C-Suite executives who have significant equity packages. I am not here to question the enforceability of non-competes (many contend that they are actually unenforceable, especially in certain jurisdictions), but I can confirm that it may seriously compromise your ability to hire the candidate of your choice. Candidates asked to sign the clause may instead choose to remain in the market, competing head-to-head with you.

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

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TIAA-CREF(NEWPORT, CA) Associate, RE Asset Management The hire will assist in asset managing real estate equity investments consisting of office, industrial, retail and multifamily located throughout the western US, and assist in negotiating leases with prospective tenants as well as develop strategies and budgets for leasing, marketing, annual operating expenses and capital improvements.ZIFF PROPERTIES, INC.(CHARLESTON, SC) Director of Construction The director of construction is a management level position, reporting to the director of development and supervising construction managers as they are hired.

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