Transition and the Executive Director–What's Next?
What is your next step? The good news is that this is the perfect opportunity to step back and evaluate the needs of the nonprofit. One option is to hire an Interim Executive Director (Interim).
Why should the board consider this option?
Bringing on an Interim provides the organization time to acknowledge both the accomplishments of the outgoing ED as well as take the time to find the best person to fill the permanent position going forward. The Interim will help ease the passage of the previous ED while preparing the staff for new leadership. Equally important, this option allows the board and executive staff the opportunity to take a step back and evaluate the current situation as well as provide stability to the board and staff in a time of continual change.
An experienced Interim will be objective and skilled in both leading and supporting the board and staff through this transition. The Interim will bring a new perspective to assess the organization’s strengths, capacity, and critical needs. They will also be able to implement current and future goals for the organization. A skilled Interim is an authentic leader who coaches and also provides insight to the board and staff through the transition and continually focuses on strengthening and building staff and board engagement throughout the process. The Interim can assist with the executive search by leading the search process or working with a search consultant.
During the search process, the Interim will work collaboratively with the board, staff and community stakeholders. The Interim also will have a unique opportunity to assess and identify where the organization is in their current organizational life cycle, and determine current and future needs by working with the board and staff. This will assist in identifying essential leadership traits and talents required from the new director that fit the organizational life cycle, needs and culture of the organization.
As Strategic Consulting & Coaching (SCC) continues to provide interim leadership to small (under $2 million) to medium nonprofits ($3-7 million), we have learned nonprofit’s organizational and capacity needs vary. Through these experiences, we determined that the best results for an organization’s transition didn’t come from a standard or traditional approach. Rather, the most successful transitions grew from a unique approach that was catered to the organization’s specific needs.
We listened to our clients and have since invested in a team of experienced professionals who bring expertise in:
Program evaluation and analytic skills
Communication and marketing, including social media
Coaching and team development
This new approach assists organizations in investing and developing systems in fundamental areas during or following a transition. The goal is to work with our organizational clients to create a strong business infrastructure, resulting in the ability to achieve the organizational mission with a greater community impact while being fiscally stable.