An Operational Approach to Interim Leadership

With a foundation built over a decade of senior leadership roles in the Royal Marines, my leadership style has matured and adapted over 25 years of facing the business world’s demanding environments and operational leadership obstacles.

Interim Leadership is an art. Operational duties have taught me that a more complex environment demands more Leadership, not less. If a void in Leadership exists, team coordination and focus will drift, morale and performance can quickly deteriorate, and a team can become distracted by Leadership that is not necessarily the type of Leadership you require.

As a Professional Interim Leader, I’ve led and guided organisations through critical transitions. My approach combines a deep commitment to a mission-focused and people-oriented strategy underpinned by an adaptive leadership style.  

Chairman, Interim and Operational Advisor to Private Equity, Venture Capital and Asset-Backed firms.

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Mission-Focused Leadership

A mission-focused approach is the bedrock of my interim leadership strategy. It starts with a clear understanding of my Client’s Goal for my appointment. From then on, this core mission guides every decision and action, ensuring the team is aligned towards the goal and has common objectives conducive to achieving the Mission. This alignment cultivates a sense of purpose and unity, fostering a motivated and engaged workforce essential for achieving results.

Mission-focused leadership provides clarity not only for the leadership team but also for all employees. This clarity lets everyone understand how their roles contribute to the larger mission, resulting in a more productive and accountable team.

People-Oriented Leadership

Any organisational transformation can only succeed if rooted in a people-first approach. My role as an interim leader, Interim CEO or Interim CRO often involves navigating through change and uncertainty. During these times, prioritising the employees’ well-being and professional development is crucial.

A people-oriented approach involves active listening, empathy, and the creation of a supportive environment where employees feel valued and heard. Engaging with the team, understanding their needs, and encouraging them to share their insights are key to nurturing a productive and motivated workforce.

Adaptive Leadership

Change is the only constant in today’s business world, and an adaptive leadership style is essential. It’s not about imposing a rigid set of strategies but about being flexible and responsive to the evolving landscape. This involves assessing and reassessing the situation, making timely adjustments, and continuously learning from the results.

The adaptability and agility embedded in my approach ensure that the organisation can respond to unforeseen challenges effectively. It also provides the groundwork for the incoming permanent CEO to build upon a solid foundation that can withstand the tests of time.

Preparing for the Future

Of course, as an interim leader, CEO or CRO, my immediate priority is stabilising the business and restoring profitability. However, as an Interim leader, I must remain future-oriented and successfully prepare the organisation to transition to a new permanent CEO. My combination of mission-focused, people-oriented, and adaptive leadership ensures that results are achieved and sustained. In short, I aim to create an environment where the incoming CEO can build upon a robust and adaptive foundation, propelling the organisation to even greater heights.