If you’re considering an interim management role, the required skills may be different than what you’re expecting. Knowledge, skills, and experience are a given, but what else does an interim manager need to have in their expanding portfolio of skills?
The key to marketing yourself is finding your unique selling point, the thing that your competitors do not have. An important skill to have is the ability to work in a changing environment, as the role of many interim managers is to join for specific projects. Interim executives can be brought in to solve particular business problems like addressing fundamental changes in the way they work, or replacing key individuals when a firm is losing talent without having succession plans in place.
When considering the roles you can undertake, you need to ensure there are no significant gaps in your qualification, skills, or knowledge. If there are no gaps, then you know you can offer the complete package in your area of expertise.
The ability to ask the right question and adapt in a short space of time is fundamental to executing work as an interim manager. Additionally, being able to remain focused on the outcomes you have committed to achieving to guarantee the success of your assignment is critical.
If you are placed in an interim role with the responsibility of making change happen, or assisting in managing the problems a business faces, you will need to be resilient. You will likely face resistance from employees for many reasons as an interim manager. However, you may also receive push back from leaders of the organisation you are placed in. Dealing with the pressures while delivering the objectives expected of you can be exhausting, but strength and determination with be the key to your success.
As an external resource, remaining independent and not involving yourself in office politics will allow you to complete your job with objectivity, and enable confident but effective interventions.
You may have heard many managers say “I don’t do detail”, as they typically take on a more generalist role when they have many areas of the business to deal with. As an interim manager, the detail is an essential part of your position. Spending time fine-tuning at the beginning of a job allows you to reap the rewards of your efforts at the end. You will also be able to leave your assignment with excellent references to set you up for your next interim role.