Veredus Executive Resourcing, which is handling the recruitment of the council's chief executive and statutory finance and legal officers - advertised in today's LGC - designed the surprisingly frank and informative recruitment package.
The recruitment pack for the job, described as 'one of the most difficult in local government', offers a no-holds-barred view of the council from members, officers, the community and partners.
The wide-ranging package includes contributions from Steve Bundred, outgoing chief executive of Camden LBC and David Henshaw, chief executive of Liverpool City Council. Both men, credited with turning around failing councils, outlined the benefits of being a transformational leader.
Acting chief executive Michael Frater said: 'Reputations are made by transforming under-performing councils. It is one of the biggest challenges in local government, but also the ideal circumstances where you can make a name for yourself.'
Walsall's three political group leaders will consider public sector, private sector and international candidates.
The council has still not escaped the threat of intervention, which could put off candidates. But councillors have pressed home their commitment to the recovery plan and the hard lessons that have been learned (LGC, 15 November).
Ian Shires, Lib Dem group leader, said: 'We want to avoid intervention at all costs.'
Leader Tom Ansell (Con) said: 'Before, we conducted confrontational politics and wouldn't have agreed on anything, whether it was good or bad. But now we see it's important to work together.'
John Walker, of Renaissance, the firm Veredus chose to produce the CD-Rom, said the visual impact was essential to convince candidates of members' sincerity about improving the council.