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- 64% of respondents became Interim Managers to work more flexibly
- Inequality of pay is not considered an issue
- 50% of respondents don’t miss the office politics of previous roles

3 July 2007 – Achieving a better work/life balance and taking on more stimulating work are the top attractions for women Interim Managers, according to a survey of 700 female Interim managers, commissioned by Russam GMS in June 2007.

64% of women became Interim Managers to work more flexibly and 21% stated they wanted to take on more challenging work. These factors were considered more important than financial reward. Just 11% had left their jobs to earn more money, whilst only 4% switched to Interim Management to take on a more senior position.

Having a more flexible work life was also considered the top benefit of working as an Interim Manager, according to 62% of respondents. 17% felt that Interim Management enabled them to express their opinions more openly; whilst for 15% it brought an end to such monotonous work. Some stated that the opportunity to escape the office politics they associated with their former working lives was a major benefit (6%).

A resounding 76% of respondents stated that they now enjoyed a better work life balance as an Interim Manager, compared to their former careers.

Pay equality with men was not considered an issue for the vast majority of women. 39% felt that Interim Management did enable equality of pay with men and 48% claimed that their pay levels made no difference to them, because they were equally well financially rewarded in their previous jobs. Only 13% of women felt their pay was not on a par with their male equivalents.

Anna Bishell, Business Development Manager at Russam GMS states, “There is a huge talent pool of women on the market who have not yet considered Interim management as a solution to balancing a challenging career with a more flexible working life, which as our research clearly showed, is a top priority.”

Whilst interim management brings flexibility, it does have some drawbacks. Assignments can come up different locations across the UK and travel away from home is often part of the role. However, just a quarter of respondents said they were unhappy about working away from home and only 17% disliked having to stay in B&Bs. In addition, 25% felt that they were working long hours as an Interim, but acknowledged that it was generally for limited time periods.

Many respondents relished the challenge of going into different environments to problem solve. Whilst 33% of them acknowledged that there were higher expectations placed upon them than permanent staff, this did not put them off developing their careers as Interim Managers.

Office politics are the thing which 50% of the respondents claim to miss least about their previous lives, whilst 38% were glad to see the back of their old offices and work in different environments.

Respected Interim practitioner Josephine Crabb, commented “It is fair to say that the quality and the complexity of work as an Interim is challenging. The work often needs to be accomplished in a short timescale, but this brings an opportunity to make real a difference to an organisation, which can be very rewarding. Any breaks between assignments can be used to broaden horizons through continuing professional development, networking or travel.”

Anna Bishell concluded, “It is heartening that the majority of women questioned do seem to be achieving their goal of finding a better balance between their work and home lives through interim management. There is a huge demand for Interims at the moment, particularly in the public sector where we are supplying a steady stream of experienced Interim Managers to central government. We hope we will see even greater numbers of women coming forward to work as Interims and help increase further the diversity of people represented in boardrooms across the UK.”

What are the top reasons women embarked on a career in Interim Management?

64% wanted to work more flexibly
21% wanted a more challenging role
11% wanted to earn more money
4% wanted a more senior role

What are the major benefits of working as an Interim Manager?

62% felt that flexible working was the key benefit
17% said they could express themselves more freely
15% said they were no longer working on monotonous projects
6% said that not being involved in office politics was a
major benefit

What do you miss most about your former work life?

50% stated office politics
38% said they didn’t miss their office
12% said they didn’t miss the long hours

Is a better work/life balance achieved through working as an interim manager?

76% said yes
13% said it was the same
11% said no

Does it put you on an equal pay scale with men?

39% said yes
13% said no
48% said it made no difference

What are the drawbacks of working as an Interim Manager?

33% said there were higher expectations to perform
25% didn’t like working away from home
25% didn’t like the long hours
17% said they didn’t like having to stay away in B&Bs

About Russam GMS
Russam GMS is the longest established mainstream provider of interim managers in the UK with a 23 year track record.

Russam GMS is a Founder Member of the Interim Management Association and of the international Taplow Group.

Russam GMS has the most comprehensive database of Interim Managers in the UK.

Russam GMS has established specialist practices relevant to CATALIST customers: Central Civil Government (CCG), Local Government & Education, Healthcare, Defence, and Charities & Non-Departmental Public Funded Bodies (NDPFBs). Each practice is managed by a Director who is a subject-matter expert

Russam GMS is ISO 9001:2000 registered and hold Investors in People status – the whole team is committed to process improvement and striving for excellence.


Kathryn Hughes
Russam GMS Ltd.
Tel: 020 32491072/07801 823 839

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