Interim executives benefit companies dramatically: high-level expertise drops in quickly to do the tough jobs — powerfully and without bias or politicking — to help a company improve. Soon after, they ride off into the sunset to the next assignment. Think of an interim executive as a modern-day John Wayne without the cowboy hat.

Mark Sullivan, founder of Lineage Capital Investment, knows how it works. His private equity firm recently dropped an interim CFO into a manufacturing business amid a turnaround. Monetary villains — so to speak — threatened the corporate ranch and outside help was essential to clean out the threat.

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When do you bring an interim executive in to a company? In this video two veterans, John Collard, Chairman of Strategic Management Partners and Robert Jordan, CEO of the Association of Interim Executives, give a quick description. Do interims always replace existing management? Decidedly — no. Many times interims complement the existing team