TYPES OF EXECUTIVE INTERIM MANAGEMENT SERVICES
In executive interim management it is always about proven skills;
• in similar situations with a similar problem,
• in a corresponding position / function,
• and often also in the same industry, or at least being familiar with the characteristic of the sector concerned.
Once again, let us be clear. In executive interim management, there is no career growth path of an increasing continuation of a new challenging function. Interim managers are placed on their next assignment, jobs that they have already carried out, and it has been proven that they did deliver a good result. Of course, as an interim executive manager, one can consciously grow in reputation through the number of successful and prestige assignments. Today, specialisation and personal branding are indispensable!
In executive interim management, Consultdustry offers the following types of interim management services;
• Crisis Interim Management / Recovery Interim Management
• Turnaround Interim Management
• Transition Interim Management
• Project Interim Management
• Program Interim Management
• Start-up Interim Management
Commonly have all these types of executive management mentioned above, that they are
• the trinity of operational day-to-day management, advice and implementing (3 processes)
• interim positions at executive / c-level
• the task of achieving agreed, measurable & sustainable outcomes
• a combination of change management and project management
• aimed at increasing 'getting in control' and achieving continuity
Often forgotten, but executive interim management is the ability to lead and manage 3 processes at the same time; a company simply has to be capable of continuing operationally while making plans and making changes and improvements. In practice, the critical operational management often comes into the oppressions as everyone gives his or her attention and wants to be explicitly involved in the change processes. We are therefore of the opinion that one of the most important talents, possibly the most elementary of an experienced executive interim manager, is finding and maintaining the right balance between these 3 processes, including the associated flexible prioritisation and an interdependent timetable. The management of related and interdependent processes, while at the same time, ensuring that the operational management experiences minimal nuisance and damage.
In essence, these types of executive interim management will not only differ greatly from one another in the assignment with the intended objectives, but also will vary in;
• urgency or given interim management time
• impact for those involved and organisation
• risk; the cost of failure, investments, uniqueness
• need for principle/progress management
• need for additional specific expertise
Image: Types of executive interim management; transition, turnaround, recovery and startup (program & project interim management is not included in this image).
Crisis Interim Management / Recovery Interim Management
This is a business crisis, a significant emergency situation in which the functioning of an organisation is seriously disrupted, often accompanied by negative publicity and the continuity of the business is seriously threatened. Bankruptcy threatens, creditors and financiers fear that financial obligations cannot be fulfilled. In our opinion, a business crisis relates to the threat of a company's continued existence, at least a situation that has a very negative impact on a company's reputation and/or business results. These situations can be broken down by reason into three possible categories;
• not solving long dormant problems,
• incorrectly unpacking management actions (which in the first instance were often underestimated circumstances)
• sudden events with a huge impact.
Some examples, of an almost endless list, of these typical causes of crisis interim management/recovery interim management assignments are; payment problems / lack of solvency, death of a key person of the company, labour disputes, recall of products, serious conflicts and disputes, dramatic performing projects and project claims, loss of computer data, natural disasters, fraud, heavy negative product and service reviews, collapsing image (pay off of 'wrong' business by negative publicity)
Recovery is often characterised by a lack of financial resources, the regaining of trust and control, a brief decision time as acute interventions are necessary which are accompanied by a forced implementation of measures and changes.
Nowadays crisis interim management/recovery interim management is much more extensive than
• the recovery of failing policy
• debt restructuring / financial restructuring and disinvestments
• blunt cutting costs such as the dismissal of personnel.
There is a shift, and the motto is ‘prevent and being prepared’. An adequate crisis interim management approach not only requires restorative measures to act, but also
• a proactive approach;
risks analyses and management plans, alert management, efficient external and internal communication, the availability of resources, scenarios and the contacts to be able to appoint expert interim management to minimise damage and repair the crisis.
Turnaround Interim Management
A process aimed at strategically repositioning the company and/or the recovery and improvement of the business performance in a very short and medium term. Turnarounds are
• timely reorganisation or expansion/preparation for the near future.
In a turnaround, there is often a two-track approach
• to stop non-core and unprofitable activities and on the other hand
• the development of structural profitability through growth and build competitive advantages. Interim turnaround management is
• very drastic and disrupts the organisation to a large extent with all its consequences.
Commonly, the organisation and its staff are under considerable time pressure to improve profitability in the short term and thus ensure continuity.
It is striking that
• the need for a turnaround is often denied and is attributed to unique and one-off external factors. In the event of late intervention, within a timeframe of approximately 1 to 2 years, the result will be they get in a poorly controllable and painful crisis interim management/recovery interim management situation. Typical turnaround interim management assignments are; underperforming financial businesses, exponential organisational growth, a strong downturn of sales or loss of market share, mergers, divestitures, leadership/management conflicts, downsizing and dismissal of jobs etc.
Transition Interim Management
Interim transition management largely resembles interim turnaround management with the big difference that there is considerably less time pressure. From a vision, the strategic plans are made in time to implement them in the organisation. Interim transition management is, therefore, a model for managing processes of co-evolution towards sustainable business development. Transition management is;
• sustainable development is a never-ending process of progressive business and organisational improvements and changes.
• several parallels and series of planned transitions focused on the continuity and continued profitability of the company in the medium term.
Typical transition Interim management assignments are strategic development and planning, change management in particular cultural changes, implementation of significant new processes or improvements thereof, post mergers and M&A plans, financial restructuring, a new development of products & markets
Project Interim Management
A project is a phased and structured performance of set related activities with the goal to achieve a specific result, wherefore multidisciplinary cooperation is needed. A project is a temporary method of working together and a suitable working method must be sought for each project. If specific necessary expertise should temporarily be added to the project and other people who usually participate in other work processes are brought in full or part-time.
Project interim management makes up a large part of interim management services, given
• the temporary character of projects and
• the need for exceptional expertise in projects
For a project to function in a targeted and productive way, the following four project management processes can be recognised as determinative.
• the interaction
This is about enabling the project team to work together effectively. This requires managerial skills of the project leader, pure team roles, a good team formation process, the willingness of those involved to deal constructively with conflicts (priorities and distribution of scarce resources often results in an internal struggle).
• the project organisation
This includes compiling the project organisation of client (and sponsor), project director/manager (end responsible), the various team members with their specific role and a delegate of the users to represent their interests. Naturally, the appointment will be accompanied by the assignment of tasks and powers.
• the environment/stakeholders
In order for a project to succeed, support is needed from those involved. Support from people such as users, chefs, suppliers, financiers, residents, customers, etc. The input of what is conceived and created in a project must be supported, accepted and used by others than the project organisation. In recent years there has been increasing attention for the timely, active and focused involvement of all those stakeholders (strategic environmental management).
• the method
The core of project-based work is steering on a pre-agreed basis result (deliverable or outcomes). Sometimes certainly with project interim management assignments, those are not completely clear at the start; thus an inventory and assignment definition must be carried out first. If the results to be delivered are clear, the work to be performed can be quantified and phased in a time schedule. To ensure that the project is steerable and that the result meets the demands of the client (project sponsor), agreements must be made about the management of the project regarding time, money, quality, information (and the recording thereof) and organisation. Finally, it must be agreed in advance at which moments the client should be consulted and monitor the project progress and has to agree and made the required decisions. With the above, the three components that make up the method are explained: phase, control and decision.
In project interim management we know the following assignment types
• construction and asset investments projects
• implementations change management and business improvement projects
• innovative projects and research studies (R&D, product development)
• administrative, political and development projects (government, interest groups, administration)
We make available in interim project management
• interim project directors/managers
and from temporary management, we can also deliver
• complete project teams and project team members (planning, finance control, quality, commissioning, health - safety & environment (HSE), procurement/contract management, construction site managers)
Program Interim Management
Programs do contain projects and are the process of monitoring and managing various related projects. An interim program director is, for a specified period, responsible for the effective management and the coordinating to acquire advantages by the control of a series of diverse activities and projects with corresponding sub-objectives that have a coherence, to result in pre-defined objectives. Interim program management task is to manage
• minimising risks, identify risks, initiate and approving risk mitigation plans
• optimise costs, find cost-saving costs
• monitoring whether the committed resources and funds are actually available (sometimes even the release of those)
• valuation of individual projects and the added value of the total (multiplier)
• preventing conflicts between the various projects
• preventing sub-optimisation
Startup Interim Management