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Interim Management – The Corporate Emergency Service

As I write this article I, like many others around the world, am playing my part in combating the spread of Covid-19 by remaining at home.

I feel very fortunate that I have the luxury of being with my family and that the only thing expected of me is to observe the recommendations and obligations outlined by the UK Government.

I recognise that not everyone is as fortunate – and I applaud and stand in awe at the commitment shown by those key workers around the world – who are standing up and showing what real heroes look like – especially those on the front-line within the Emergency Services.

Often it takes a crisis, a disaster, an unprecedented phenomenon for people to really understand the value these Emergency Services offer.

In my opinion, Interim Management is a corporate “Emergency Service” – it’s always there, in the background, utilised from time-to-time without much detailed thought about the impact it has, but then, when a major situation arises, it is these men and women who take the responsibility on their shoulders to improve the wellbeing of their “patients”.

It is these individuals who are willing and able to share their knowledge and previous experiences and be accountable for making tough decisions and achieving the best possible outcome for the given situation.

With all global economies currently experiencing a severe, unprecedented and unexpected shock, each and every business owner, employee, supplier and consumer is needing to adjust to the “new normal”.

Experience, agility, adaptability, accountability and attitude are all key attributes to weathering and riding this particular storm – and that is what Interim Management is all about.

Taking ownership of something that requires consolidation, evolution, growth, change or transformation in calm, frenzied or indifferent environments is all part of what makes these individuals a “corporate emergency service”.

With the uncertainty of the IR35 legislation now pushed into the political long-grass, the Interim Management marketplace offers genuine, tangible hope for all sizes of businesses moving forward.

Whether the immediate need is to review and assess existing contracts, to support current suppliers as best as they can, create a contingency plan for continuity of supply, to restructure governance, technology and systems to allow remote access whilst different sites are on lockdown/isolation or to identify and implement a new commercial business strategy for the “new normal” it is now, that the Interim Management marketplace needs to be utilised fully.

I see the potential for these experienced, technically competent and highly astute individuals to make a significant positive impact in all sectors of commerce and industry. The inclination to conduct a diagnosis and recommendation at no cost to the prospective client, illustrates empathy, understanding and commercial acumen at a time when it would be easy to lose focus and purpose.

As someone who has evolved an experienced network of locally-based and globally mobile Interim Practitioners, I am already hearing from parts of my network that once this “new normal” has bedded in they will be looking to engage immediately available Interims who can parachute in and create ROI from day one.

This is the same across Procurement, Supply Chain Management, Logistics and Distribution and Digital and E-Commerce.

In my opinion, the next 12-18 months (at least) will see an enormous surge in demand for Interim resource to review and redefine strategy, implement and embed change, up-skill and transfer knowledge into the business and ultimately, to deliver output that will ensure the continuance and/or growth of the organisation in question.

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David Hazeldine