Archive for February, 2009

Interim Leadership Doesn’t Have to Mean “Crisis”

Posted on February 27, 2009. Filed under: interim executive, interim management, On demand executives | Tags: , , , |

I heard it again yesterday. A person mentioned that companies who are in a “crisis” or in a “turnaround”  situation should consider interim management in operations, finance, sales, or marketing.  That is a true statement, but the majority of interim engagements are not in troubled companies.

Just because a company brings in an interim manager it isn’t a sign the company is in trouble.

Most interim marketing and sales executives, for instance, are engaged by a company to address one or more of these situations:

  • Revenue growth has flat-lined, or is in decline. What worked in the past isn’t working now and the management team needs objective insight, new energy and different skill sets for a season to help them point the growth curve in the right direction again.
  • There’s a temporary gap in leadership, gap in skill set, or gap in bandwidth that has an unacceptably high opportunity cost associated with the gap.

There should be no scarlet letter associated with the hiring of an on-demand leader. It simply means the company is very smart about how it allocates its resources.

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Can Interim Management be Cure for Brain Drain?

Posted on February 3, 2009. Filed under: alternative staffing, interim management, temporary management | Tags: , , , , , |

For any company in an economic downturn, after slashing  employees to reduce their overhead there follows a sobering moment of clarity.  “How is the work going to get done? We just let go the only people that really knew how to do this (whatever “this” is) really well!”

I propose that interim management is an excellent solution, especially when the new gap is in a highly-skilled management role (as opposed to a low-skilled bureaucratic role).

So, the company can’t afford a FTE as head of marketing. Fine. Bring in a perfectly suited interim marketing executive for a couple days a week.

I had coffee with a former client last week. He had just been laid off.  The company he had worked for needed to slash overhead due to the rapid economic decline. They let go the head of marketing and the product manager, electing to leave untouched a small department of marketing specialists. Who is managing this group, you might ask? They now report to a director of business development with no marketing experience whatsoever.

Cut backs are agonizing decisions and I’m not second-guessing the decision to swing the axe at the higher salaried managers first. However, what is to become of this very effective marketing group without skilled leadership? Imagine what just two days a week of expert marketing leadership could provide.

Something tells me this story is being repeated again and again all around the world. Interim managers, let us put on our capes and save the day.

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    A Discussion of Interim Management for Marketing and Sales Functions by Charles Besondy

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  • About this Blog

    This blog is devoted to the topic of interim management for marketing functions within large and small corporations. Interim management as a staffing concept is well-understood and widely utilized in Europe. However, here in the colonies we are just beginning to open our eyes to the business benefits of being flexible and nimble when it comes to staffing senior-level marketers. (c) 2006 - 2012 Charles Besondy
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