The evaluation of an interim leader candidate should include meeting the person either face-to-face or via conference call or Skype. Compare the candidate’s skills to those required in the statement of work. First, for example, determine if completion of a formal education is required. Look for relevant accomplishments listed on the candidate’s resume or Linked In profile. These might include achievements such as:
- demonstrated success in a “turnaround” initiative,
- the creation of a new practice program,
- strong written and verbal skills,
- experience with practice operations,
- a successful technology implementation,
- revenue cycle optimization, or
- LEAN or project management.
Interim leaders typically are senior level consultants with 15+ years of experience in a related role (e.g., medical practice, hospital administration, or practice management). Seek individuals active in their profession and who have advanced certification. Certification usually ensures the professional is up-to-date in his or her field.
Successful on-boarding for an interim leader is not dissimilar to that of a permanent staff member. The plan should include a general announcement to all the relevant staff and coordination of one-on-one meetings should be set up with managers, physicians, and other key stakeholders. Explain any circumstances and share relevant data regarding any potentially volatile or sensitive issues.
Solid partnerships, smooth transitions
With an experienced interim leader in place, a group practice has time to identify the skills needed of a permanent replacement. It can thoroughly research the labor market and compensation ranges, network with recruiters or professional colleagues, and list the job with professional trade organizations. An interim leader can help recruit the full-time manager and provide a valuable knowledge transfer to help in the on-boarding process.
From the beginning to the end, a strong partnership between an interim leader and a group practice will result in a successful engagement—for the healthcare professional and practice alike.