Report

Poorly managed transitions can erode organizational effectiveness and service quality, and even put a nonprofit out of business. However, nonprofits that receive the proper support and understand the transition process use these periods of change as opportunities for growth and improvements. This monograph describes the benefits and basics of using an interim executive director in a leadership transition. Interim executive directors are highly skilled managers who temporarily take the helm of an organization (four to eight months on average), help the board and staff address important systems and capacity issues, and lay the groundwork for the permanent leader’s success.

January 1, 2005

Executive Transitions Series

In This Report, You’ll Learn

  1. 1

    The benefits and basics of using an interim executive director in a leadership transition.

  2. 2

    The challenges of agencies in transition.

  3. 3

    How to select an interim executive director to fit the needs of an agency in transition.

  4. 4

    The process of working with an interim executive director.

  1. 5

    Examples of how specific agencies have benefited from the use of an interim executive director.

Key Takeaway

Groups that do use an interim executive director emerge stronger, more financially sound, and with high levels of optimism.

In a 2004 survey of more than 2,200 nonprofit organizations, 65% of respondents say they are likely to go through a leadership transition by 2009, while just 57% had experienced a transition during the past 10 years. In the same survey, 55% of executive directors were over the age of 50.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations