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What if you ask an Interim manager to stay as an employee?

June 14, 2019

Interim managers are hired to complete a project for a limited time period, usually counted in months.

They are usually overqualified for the job they are asked to do.

They accept to commute longer distance on a daily or weekly basis.

Interim Managers cost the company more than they would if employed.

Therefore, we are always challenging a Client hesitating between an Interim and an employee.

And we put quite severe non-solicitation clauses into our business conditions and contracts.

However, we hear very often from our clients: if he/she is really good, we will try to offer him/her a job. How do we deal with it?

As providers, we should mediate and facilitate understanding and respecting the motivation of all involved.

From our clients point of view:

IM assignments often go hand in hand with transition or transformation projects. When organisations evolve, different people with different competencies are needed. And organisations are made out of people. The IM seems to be the closest resource at hand to make a new setup sustainable, especially if the “human chemistry” works.

So, if the Client is interested, they may always ask IM and his provider, being prepared for both a YES or a NO. This should no way impact the cooperation on the mandate as an Interim mandate is not a “Try and hire” arrangement.

From the Interim Managers perspective

Of corse, it’s seducing being offered by the client to stay. They ask you because of what you are bringing to the company and usually, you may negotiate better conditions as if you would ask for a job yourself. And follow up on the project with the people you already know.

On the other hand, consider how becoming an employee will impact the relationship with the client, their management and other involved employees. And consider the impact on the tasks and completion of the project you have been hired for. Do you enjoy your independence more than you fear not finding your next mandate?

An Interim manager is not worse when considering to enter into an employment again. Choosing to work as an Interim many managers will not deny their corporate past: it is one of the key conditions to succeed as an Transition or Transformation leader. On their first, second or maybe the tenth assignment they may realise their motivation to join a company as an employee again.

As for us, providers:

We shall insist on our non-solicitation clauses to avoid a “try and hire” approach by Clients and managers “in between jobs”. At the same time, we shall be open and flexible when are Interim managers listen to offers made by Clients, as long as we are informed.