Archive for June, 2007
By Charles Besondy
Every CEO I know can be described with one or more of these labels:
- Orchestra conductor
- Chess master
- Pied piper
- Puppet master
Try it. Think of the CEOs you know (perhaps yourself even). Pin the label on the CEO. It’s fun. While personalities and leadership techniques vary, CEOs all have one thing in common—they manage resources to drive results. More specifically, the CEO blends and directs the talent, infrastructure and finances at his/her fingertips. When he gets the combination right success usually is the outcome.
However, if it was easy to get the right combination every company would be widely successful. More often than not, the limitations of the talent, infrastructure, finances, or time (our number one enemy), muck up the works and restrict success.
Interim management should be the CEO’s best friend and secret weapon (or favorite ingredient if you prefer the chef label more than the general label). By relying on interim managers in the marketing function, the CEO can apply exactly the right marketing skills and experience to an initiative for exactly the right amount of time—all while working with variable budget dollars rather than fixed budget dollars.
This ability to augment the CEOs arsenal with the right talent at the right time can be a major competitive advantage in that it enables business agility.
- The company can jump on market opportunities or react to competitive moves swiftly and adeptly. It takes far less time to locate and retain an interim manager than to recruit a full-time senior manager (even if there is headcount in the budget).
- Existing teams aren’t whip-sawed from one initiative to another. A high degree of focus can be maintained on existing business, while teams enhanced with interim marketing talent chase new opportunities.
- The initiative’s requirements can be matched to an interim’s domain and process expertise; very few compromises necessary. The CEO can select the optimum weapon for the job.
As a CEO do you see yourself selecting weapons, moving chessmen, orchestrating a team, or creating a world-class stew? Whatever metaphor you select, consider that interim management for the marketing function stands ready to help drive business and revenue growth.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
By Charles Besondy
I recently finished an engagement with a manufacturer of high-end computer systems for digital artists. Reflecting on the project I realized that it was a classic case for interim management.
The management team recognized that they had a common problem on their hands–a new product line had been conceived in Engineering and was under development. However, no product marketing or product management resources were available to validate customer requirements, develop positioning, create pricing strategy, set up a beta program, construct a go-to-market plan, etc. The company’s thin marketing resources were fully occupied with the support requirements for existing revenue-generating products.
So, management could have elected to tell their existing staff to suck it up and take on the considerable extra work for several months. However, this management team was smarter than that. They didn’t want to endanger the current revenue stream. They knew all too well how difficult it is to get business momentum in the air, and once achieved just how quickly it can stall, crash and burn if ignored.
This management team did the right thing. They brought in an interim manager (me!) to handle the product marketing duties for the new product line. With apologies to The Cable Guy, they chose to “Get ‘er Done!”Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )