One of my greatest pieces of advice for anybody considering a “career” as an interim manager is, “Don’t do it if you need to put food on the table” or put another way is that it is a frightening prospect unless you have a backstop of cash to cover you for the periods when you are contract hunting.
Worse than this is that some unsavoury behaviour becomes visible in the interim without the benefit of a personal cash reserve. They begin to spin their work out for much longer than it should take, they move into a job protection mode and trust me eventually they get found out. They get a bad reputation as the consultant who is ripping the business off.
A net result of this is that you will be found out and politely exited from the business. This is in a world where we survive by getting extended contracts and repeat contracts. Don’t do it.
In fact do the opposite. When you feel the company can stand on it’s own two feet, let them know. Offer to help them to recruit a permanent replacement for yourself.
Most of all let your bosses know that you are genuinely doing this because you don’t want to overstay your welcome, you want to find a more cost effective approach, and you want to leave them with a nice taste in their mouth. And tell them you are doing this selfishly because the next time they have an issue or a gap they will identify you as the credible solution.
One fringe benefit of this approach is that your client won’t always want to let you go, but will agree with you exactly when your “release” date will be.
Trust me this works I have done this twice with one client and have had three healthy successful contracts as a result.
So go on, sack yourself every now and then. It’s actually quite refreshing.
- The Day Rate Gigolo