Seven tips on successfully engaging an Interim Manager

Engaging and Interim Manager is often a nerve-racking experience and one that many companies shy away from, preferring instead to try plugging the gap by just working harder.  We hope the tips below will help you decide whether or not to use an Interim in your business.

  • Know when you need external resource.

Check if you really need an interim manager and that the skills and knowledge you require don’t already exist within your organisation.

Interim managers offer a compelling and specialist resource that companies may not have access to in their existing talent pool.

  • Have an ideal candidate in mind.

What do you need the interim manager to do? Who is your ideal candidate and what core competencies/essential qualities must they possess?

Do you need sector or product knowledge or fresh thinking and a new approach that comes from vertical markets or even other industries? Consider these elements to ensure you pick the right person.

Choose an interim provider carefully.

Use a reputable interim provider.

Do they have the ability to find interims with the right balance of management skills, technical know-how and market knowledge?

Look for a professional accreditation, and do they have an extensive database of candidates?

Don’t spend ages deciding who to appoint

The best interims can get snapped up quickly, so you need to respond to good ones as soon as you’ve made your choice.  In this sector, speed really is of the essence!

Remember: Interims have no ties.

Interims don’t have emotional attachments to companies like some permanent employees, who sometimes struggle to deliver bad news or are reluctant to talk about the changes needed.

Interims can speak openly to clients – they tell it like it is!

Work together.

Agree the aims, deliverables and timescales of the assignment at the outset so that both parties know what objectives they are working to. It’s vital to keep reviewing these as the assignment is progressing to get the most out of the placement.

Make the first days really count.

Once a contract is signed, an interim manager has 5-10 working days to understand the role and client requirements, the work involved and the deliverables. Ensure that they understand your needs from the start.

Where assignments ‘go wrong’ the problem can often be traced back to the first few days.

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Interim Managers – the superheros of business