A wave of emotions, rumors and concerns ripple through the Club any time there is a turnover of a General Manager. It becomes a daily topic of discussion among members, staff, and vendors. It dominates the conversations that result in taking away from the enjoyment and pleasure of the membership activities going on in the Club.
The Board wants to do their very best to acquire a top-notch General Manager that will be a good fit and stay with the Club a very long time. The members' concern will be with the selection of a new general manager and they will have to get to know the “new guy,” with hopes the “new guy” will be the best to serve them. The staff knows there will be change, and they hope the boss doesn’t bring in his own people from previous jobs and fire them. The vendor realizes the experienced General Manager will have strong opinions on preferred products and equipment, and they might lose their business with the Club.
Immediately bringing in an Interim General Manager sends a favorable message to all that the Board is acting in a positive and professional manner. Don’t let yourself or members of the club get directly involved in the operations. With an Interim Manager in place, there is someone there all the time to answer detailed operational questions from all parties concerned on a day-to-day basis. The Interim Manager will ensure quality operations, service, revenue capture and expense control during this time. Interim Managers have a stake in the success of their actions because they rely on referrals saying they have performed to the highest of standards.
An Interim Manager can be there immediately. The Interim Manager delivers results and enhances productivity based on the plan in place, and works with each of the departmental leaders to produce products and services that meet and exceed the expectations of the members. Typically, Interim Managers have years of experience in positions of leadership equal to or greater than the requirements of the General Manager being replaced. Use this interim General Manager’s experience to make the club better! This is a good opportunity for the club to get a seasoned advisor who if given the right direction can give the club some really good/unbiased results. An Interim Manager possesses the skills and qualities to be effective the very first day of the assignment.
It can take up to four months to complete all of the necessary actions to install a new General Manager. This position is a key position that potential members look to when deciding to join the club. You really don’t want to say, “We currently don’t have one.” During this time, the Board can also resurrect special projects that can be completed with the direction of the Board. The Interim Manager is not embroiled in the relationships of the Club and therefore can make ideal recommendations to the Board minus many of the day-to-day cultural and political issues of the Club.
A General Manager with an annual salary of $150,000 with a 20% bonus really costs the Club closer to $234,540 a year (considering a 30.3% employer cost) or $19,545 per month. Interim Management fees are generally within the total costs of the General Manager compensation. An Interim Manager on site doesn’t watch the clock and often works six days a week for three, six, or nine months, and this can result in a tremendous value to the Club.
The option of hiring Interim Management during a change in top management always provides so many more opportunities for improved excellence in all aspects of the Club’s Operations. Absent the direct management expertise during this time with existing departmental leadership does not provide much opportunity for improvement.
Don’t waste this time to save money when this time can be used to do great things. Use this time to make improvements that all the members will noticeably see.
Seize the opportunity.