Interim leaders are a staffing solution worth consideration. They can fill a leadership vacuum, bring the right experience when you need it, focus on results and sustain process changes.

Ready, Set, Go!

Our clients want to solve problems and respond to opportunities faster than they have in the past, faster than they thought they were capable of, and faster than the competition. When it comes to staffing solutions, many organizations struggle to fill the vacuum created by an open leadership position.  Interim leaders and managers help organizations move forward faster. Here’s how.

The Experience You Need When You Need It

Today, the management teams at most companies are fairly lean. This is effective from a cost standpoint, but too many organizations lose forward momentum because they don’t have anyone with enough time, ability, interest or motivation to tackle important challenges. Interim leaders bring direct experience to projects or areas where a company lacks expertise for as long as it’s needed. Some specific examples include factory consolidation, new technology investments, distribution network re-design, acquisition integration, and other areas.

Laser Focus on Results

Interim managers are catalysts for targeted change. While every manager will say he or she is “results-oriented,” the interim management role is 100% structured around achieving specific objectives. They are less encumbered by existing processes, staff issues or office politics, making it easier for them to achieve the targeted objectives faster than it can be for a permanent manager. 

Two Steps Forward, Then Two More Steps Forward!

The biggest change in operational consulting since I started doing this work 12 years ago is our clients’ heightened focus on sustainability. Too many plants have made some process improvements only to have everything slip back to the way it used to be within a month. You can’t move forward if you’re always losing ground. Falling somewhere between a consultant and a permanent hire, an interim manager’s tenure can help ensure that any process changes are integrated into a company’s management system, and are therefore more likely to be sustained.  

Time to Find the Best Permanent Hire

The costs for hiring the wrong person for a leadership position can add up quickly. These costs include recruiting fees, relocation costs, severance packages and legal fees. That doesn’t include lost productivity, management inefficiency and missed business opportunities, which are compounded by the 6-12 months it typically takes companies to recognize and respond to a poor hiring decision. Interim managers can directly support the hiring process and provide more time to find the best permanent manager for a given role.

I’d like to close by re-emphasizing this final point. Because the costs of making a mistake are compounded the higher you go in an organization, hiring is one of those times when you need to go slow to go fast. Staffing solutions that include the use of interim managers can fill the gap and clear the decks so that permanent leadership can hit the ground running.

A Case in Point

Read our recent case study about an auto supplier with a neglected maintenance program. Our interim manager implemented a maintenance (TPM) program which led to fewer equipment breakdowns and less downtime.