Hiring the services of an interim manager is an investment on behalf of the business, and as such, it’s important that you utilise their services in the best way possible. Interim Managers are often a distressed purchase and are made when a client needs an injection of skills swiftly, or due to a sudden departure as well as part of an overall strategic plan.
Whether you are hiring an interim Functional specialist such as an interim CEO, interim Finance Director or interim HR Director or Programme Director our top ten list will help you avoid the pitfalls and make sure the hiring process is thought-through, cost effective and delivers results.
1. Have a clear brief – Invest the time before you approach providers to make sure you understand not just what your business needs, but the key achievements that will make the interim role a success
2. Select a provider not an agency – you want a provider that will understand your requirement, send you profiles of interims they know and trust and not just CVs from a database
3. Face to Face de-brief – Invest your time in a face to face meeting with the provider so that they understand your requirement and get a feel for your style and business culture
4. Don’t waste interview time – where possible, review the shortlisted interims’ profiles by video to eliminate wasting valuable meeting time. Then decide who to meet in person
5. Prepare for the Interim Meeting – make sure you are prepared and can answer their questions too. Interims are often in demand when they are available and it is as important for you to ‘sell’ the role as it is to understand whether they are the right person to deliver the brief for you
6. Take references – always make sure clients have been happy with the work the interim has delivered for them and pin point key areas that you need the interim to address
7. Be ready from day 1 – once you decide to hire an interim, make sure you are ready from the moment they join. Inform the team, have information ready which allows them to get going straight away
8. Sponsorship is key – you have made the investment, now make sure you get the return. Interims need a good sponsor to ensure success in role
9. Communication and Feedback – this should be key throughout the assignment – make sure you get regular reports or have regular meetings with the interim to understand key milestones and how they are executing the brief
10. Manage the interims’ exit – make sure this is as well thought through as the brief. It is important that they are working towards an exit plan, leaving a legacy that the team can build upon.