Interim management is in demand. More and more businesses are using interim managers as solutions to a number of issues. If you have always liked the idea of the role now is a good time to make the leap and become an interim manager.
Good interims have key skills that all sought after. In this post we take a look at what they are. Note, this is outside of the core competencies of your field.
As an interim you may find yourself in uncomfortable management situations, and you may be expected to act without having all the information. At any given point in your working day you will be expected to shift gears to get things done. To cope, you need a calm head and react on demand.
Often, interims have to rely on their own initiative to get the answers they need. You are probably plugging a skills gap or replacing a key member of management staff who has left. As such the ability to take information from a diverse range of sources, analyse and synthesise that information and apply it to your current role is important. If you have a grasp of cause and affect relationships, this is a bonus too. Going the extra mile is important here.
To be a good interim manager you need a good understanding of business. This includes knowing the consequences of business actions, and understanding how the different departments of the business interact with one another. Here, you will bring your previous experience to bear to get results.
An important aspect of interim management is to be able to manage the creativity of others. You should be able to look ideas objectively and decide which ones are workable /marketable. A tolerance for a false start is needed here.
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An art of good interims is to be able to break processes down into simple, easily understandable steps. This requires a goal driven mindset to ensure that each step achieves the desired result. Along the way you will be expected to analyse results and evaluate progress. The person you report to will greatly appreciate it if you can accurately estimate time frames.
An important aspect for you to develop is to be able to take pressure. You should be able to speak clearly and precisely, working through given situations without showing signs of irritation or anger. You should have a good awareness of how your actions impact others.
It is important that you are not intimidated by other members of the management team, and can take the heat as it will invariably fly your way as the new interim manager.
The first step to become an interim manager or to make yourself marketable is to have a CV and LinkedIn profile that speaks the right language to recruiters and headhunters.