Interim leaders are usually characterized by their ability to quickly adapt and strong emotional intelligence skills. But how can an interim manager tailor his leadership approach for each individual assignment while applying these traits?
- Understand the Context. Usually, the role of interim manager doesn’t require an executive imposing his style, but adapting it to the existing culture, which reflects a high level of emotional intelligence. Therefore, the initial step is to gain a deep understanding of the organizational context, the organization’s mission and core values, and a feel of the company’s internal dynamics.
- Adapt your leadership style accordingly. A one size fits all approach might work for some time, but if you really want to make an impact and get results, make sure your style aligns to the unique needs and culture of the organization. Whether you’re a transformational, transactional, or laissez-faire leader, adapt your style to the organization’s needs and the team’s emotional landscape.
- Having an emotional connection with your team is key to being a great leader. Emotional intelligence helps you get a better understanding of how people feel, what they need, and how to respond to them. Engage with your team on a personal level and get to know what motivates them, their fears and aspirations. That way, you can be a leader they can trust.
- Communicate effectively. With emotional intelligence, your words become a bridge connecting you to your team, a tool to share vision, and a strategy to inspire action.
- Be the Change catalysator. Interim leaders are often brought in the middle of a transition or crisis. Be the stabilizing force that helps the team adapt to changes and move forward. Make your team see challenges as opportunities and create an environment that encourages growth.
- Leave a lasting impact. Finally, aim to leave a positive, lasting impact on the organization. This could be through a significant change you’ve implemented, a strong team you’ve built, or a culture of empathy and understanding you’ve fostered.
Every assignment is a new opportunity to grow as a leader. After each assignment, take a moment to reflect. What did you learn about yourself? How did your Emotional Intelligence influence the outcome? This self-awareness and willingness to learn are central to Emotional Intelligence. Take the lessons learned and apply them to your future roles.
Our business is not just about providing temporary leadership. It’s about providing emotionally intelligent leaders who understand the unique rhythm of your business and drive meaningful change.