INTERIM MANAGEMENT OR CHIEF CHANGE OFFICER?
We live in an ever-changing environment that asks us to adapt to brand new markets and new technologies in very short timescales. Every day new leaves are sprouting in the world of business.
Interim Management is a novel idea in India – perfect for the constant challenges faced by the leadership teams and boards of companies around the globe today. Interim managers come with strong problem-solving skills, technical competencies and deep experience and expertise. Any company facing a transition, a setback or a growth trajectory needs experienced multi-disciplinary talent to manage the challenges of change – a Chief Change Officer, if you will.
In Western Europe and in the US, interim management is seen as a powerful accelerated method by which to establish new permanent management structures. The new permanent manager might not be immediately available, often takes time to hit the ground running and adapt to the new culture and certainly, for a while, is uneconomical to the company. Whereas, an interim manager can provide fast, effective and lasting solutions in a finite period of time.
Generally, interim managers such as those wishing to join X-PM’s talent pool are expected to possess the following qualities:
Interim managers tend to be good self-starters and quick decision-makers who can assess and mitigate risk. They are able to integrate quickly into a company’s work culture and environment.
Keeping employees inspired, motivated and enthusiastic for the long haul is a key challenge for any interim manager. Charisma, vision and communication skills are essential to make things work out for the company long-term.
Pro-active mind set
Initiating new opportunities and handling of imminent threats before they emerge are also part of an interim manager’s portfolio. The ability to handle crises and initiate dealing with customers effectively is crucial.
Nobody understands the plight of a struggling company better than an interim manager who arrives with a fresh perspective from the outside world. Such a manager has a bird’s eye view of all the moving parts that need to come together, Finance, Marketing, Operations etc. to achieve the company’s goal efficiently. As someone from the outside, the role remains apolitical and therefore more effective.
Naturally, the flexibility and skillset of these Chief Change Officers command a premium price-tag and rightly so — as Patrick Laredo, the founder of X-PM, is fond of saying — they are the locomotives that will help get the company trains on track smoothly and efficiently.
I prefer to think about it as renting a Porsche for a short period of time!
About Amal Das
Amal is a veteran of the HR industry in India and has been a wise counsellor to over a quarter of a million professionals over the course of his varied career in talent management. As a board member of X-PM India and Chairman of the Executive Recruiters Association his business network knows no bounds and he always curious about the changes and challenges companies face.