Generation Bio is a pioneering life sciences company developing novel gene therapy techniques to target rare diseases.
Occam was hired by Atlas Venture, a venture capital firm incubating innovative life sciences entrepreneurs and firms, to build a complete C-level leadership team around the technology at the heart of Generation Bio’s platform. At that time, the company had no executive infrastructure, consisting of only an entrepreneur and very small science team. Occam took on the task in exchange for equity in the company, allowing the client to preserve precious capital while also aligning interests with Occam guaranteeing that the focus was on doing the job right—not quickly.
Recruiting an entire C-suite team from scratch required focused effort, strategic thinking and a willingness to embrace ambiguity. Occam worked with Atlas investors to assemble search parameters for positions ranging from CEO and CFO to a Chief Business Officer and several board members. Hiring for multiple key positions in parallel also required a deft hand in negotiating the construction of a leadership group: filling one position can affect the strategy for hiring the others. Recruiting top notch candidates based on the company’s potential alone was also a unique challenge. Attracting top talent to such an inchoate situation required Occam to not only evaluate but also sell potential candidates.
Occam’s first placement was CEO Geoff McDonough, M.D., an accomplished general manager, business intellect, and entrepreneur with deeply relevant domain expertise who embraced the company’s innovative approach. With McDonough secured at the helm, the Occam team then worked in concert to flesh out the rest of the senior leadership team including a CBO, CFO, and several board members over the course of the next several months.