Every Interim Manager
The role of interim manager is among the most demanding in the world of business. While most temporary staff are there to plug gaps in the bottom of an organisation, interim managers have a great deal more responsibility. They’re often drafted in during a precarious time for the business. They might be filling a gap left by a manager that’s left suddenly, or they might be part of a planned transition towards a different business model. Interim managers allow firms to take more time when it comes to the recruitment of full-time replacements – but the demands they face are quite distinct.
Interim management requires a particular range of skills. So, what are these skills?
An Abundance of Knowledge
When you’re an interim manager, there’s usually very little time to learn on the job. This means you’ll need to come equipped with an abundance of knowledge, so that you can tackle all of the challenges that the business throws your way, in a way that’s fast and decisive.
Clear Communication Skills
As with any leadership role, you’ll benefit from being able to effectively get a message across to your new staff. When the role is an interim role, you’ll have only a limited time to do this – which means you’ll need to expedite the ‘getting to know you’ phase and get straight to passing out instructions. If you have the charisma required to command the confidence of your workers, then you’ll be able to do this more effectively.
Interim managers need to be able to devise strategies rapidly. This means thinking about any problems that already exist in the company, and problems that are likely to develop after the interim period has expired. A good interim manager won’t just be able to steer the ship through choppy waters; they’ll also leave the ship in a state that requires minimal steering when the replacement takes over.
When you work as an interim manager, you’ll have very little time to forge relationships. You might inherit a working environment that’s in disarray and have to impose order on it yourself. This means that the ability to work under your own supervision and direction is absolutely essential.
If you’re working as an interim manager, you’ll need to deal with challenges outside of the working environment itself. You might be required to move from one end of the country to another fairly regularly, in pursuit of work. Having the ability to adjust quickly to a new set of working circumstances is essential, as is the inclination to look after yourself when you’re adjusting to new accommodation. The strain on your family life might be considerable – which is something you’ll certainly want to consider.
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