Interim commercial managers bring positive change

When launching the interim practice at Michael Page across the commercial functions in 2004, I was met with finance interim recruiters scratching their heads...’surely sales is driven by long term strategy and execution?’, they said and ‘is there really a sustainable network of professional commercial interims?’.  
In the last 10 years, the economy and the speed of market evolution has affected how business decisions are made; businesses have to make smart yet bold moves to brace themselves against the ebb and flow of market changes. An injection of short to mid-term, highly experienced and objective driven professional interims adds dynamism and true commercial value.  And yes, there is a plethora of sales and marketing interim managers in a ready-made network at your fingertips. 
In 2004, we were on the cusp of major changes around flexible working environments, allowing freer movement and support for employees – this in itself has a remarkable upside, but can carry key vacancy management concerns.  Running alongside this wave of change, came the crash of 2008 which still affects current permanent recruitment patterns; elongated processes, approval red tape and budgetary constraints to name but a few.  Unfortunately, this can leave companies exposed, running the risk of being left behind if the market response is stunted by lack of specialist expertise.
The UK interim management population is one of the world’s most established and an increasing number of organisations are reaping the benefits following an interim’s posting.  Interim managers by their nature are transformational gold dust; their sole goal being to reach business objectives within a given timeframe.

The value of an interim commercial manager

A superb example of the value of an interim commercial manager came in the guise of a global food conglomerate, arriving in the UK to acquire some of our most recognised brands within vinegar and pickles.  A fast and lucrative deal, but it left a new UK trading entity with no permanent commercial structure in limbo.  A seasoned interim commercial director stepped in, recognising it was business critical that profit was protected and the short to midterm agenda was met. Five interim FMCG business managers were employed through Michael Page, who brainstormed years of extensive commercial experience to formulate a business strategy.  Three years later, and with an infrastructure set by the original senior interim team, the company secured permanent headcount and retains the market lead within its category.

Why an interim and not a fixed term contractor?

Interim management is defined by highly experienced commercial experts engaged by director to C-suite to deliver key transformational, viability and turnaround projects through to relieving the pressure of lengthy senior hires.  Contractors generally sit at a lower management level for fixed term periods with core business accountabilities.
To find out more about our capabilities in this space or to discuss the benefit of an interim commercial manager, connect with Michelle Gould, Business Director at Michael Page.
T: +44 1932 264020