The measure of an effective interim manager
It’s tough to make an impact at any new company within a short space of time. This is a challenge that all interim workers face and are familiar with, but for interim managers, it’s a whole different level of pressure. With all eyes on your every move, the pressure to perform and get results without upsetting the proverbial apple cart can be a tough gig – in a manner of speaking. We’re sure our national football team’s interim manager, Gareth Southgate, would agree.
Southgate is in the spotlight after taking over from his predecessor, Sam Allardyce, who fell out of favour with the English Football Association (FA) under controversial circumstances. Nevertheless, the criteria the FA and English football fans will be using to measure Southgate’s success are largely the same points that new co-workers and the C-suite will use to assess the efficacy of interim managers. Here are few tips on making a good impact in your next gig as an interim manager.
Making an impact within a short period is key
Interim managers, much like Southgate, who has been tasked with only four matches for the moment, are typically called in to handle specific projects, guide organisations through transitional periods, or stand in for an employee. Like super subs, they bring specialised skills and a keen eye for opportunity to the table. These temporary managers can be an efficient, cost-effective solution for businesses, or sports teams, who find themselves trailing in performance against competitors.
Interim managers need to be great playmakers
Good interim managers need to quickly identify opportunities to improve processes, bring people together and rally them around their cause. They need to assess the needs of the organisation quickly and set targets for performance and then do whatever it takes to reach them. They also need to be strategic thinkers while remaining focused on the goals of their contract, working to deliver results as rapidly as possible by bringing the people around them together to meet wider business objectives.
They often need to steady a veering ship
Interim Managers often step into situations where immediate action is needed to bring a business, or business unit, back on course. To do this, they have to get to know their colleagues almost overnight, at the same time leveraging their interpersonal skills to manage scrutiny, criticism and conflict. But sometimes you simply inherit what Southgate refers to as a mess (one can see why when considering the latest fixture result against Slovenia). Getting things back on track will take a strong conviction and experience in managing different or opposing values and perspectives within the organisation.
Need an interim manager who can make an impact in your organisation?
Temp managers can bring fresh ideas and inspiration to tired, staid organisations, and it is hoped that Southgate will be able to do this for our beloved national football team. Demand for interim managers is expected to grow, particularly in the realms of project management and digital transformation.
For those looking to make a career of this type of work, there has never been a better time. To see the interim manager positions available in your area and to connect with professionals in your field, sign up for a free InteriMarket account today.