In order to add INCREMENTAL value it follows you need to have a breadth of sector experience beyond that that is the norm set by that sector. In terms of delivering successful results: that starts with 3 charachteristics of the sponsor; will they give you the space, are you aligned with the outcome, do they want to do anything different? In terms of speed of engagement and execution, leaving a legacy that comes down to the people skills. Non sector experience is therefore more valuable to delivering incremental value. Exceptional functional skills beyond your core discipline are also key to engage and drive x functional teams and get the plan right. There are traits of interims that seperate IMs from the rest to motivate them to recognise when the job is done, beyond self and exit. Portfolio management requires an ongoing input but the same applies. Icebreaker have proven this approach over the last 11 years.
Why do recruiters focus on sector: its a flaw in humans: we have a basic need for ceratinty which manifests itself in searching for certainty even for the sake of making a bad decision (the Leeson effect). Its difficult for ISPs to stand their ground because others will focus on ticking the boxes. As Nanny Mcfee says: what you need you dont want, and when you want me you dont need me :). There are also so many good execs flooding the market: corporate types are easier to engage with via association that interims because they are more familiar type to the client, but are not the same type as an professional interim, nor can they deliver as effectively nor asa ligned to getting the job done and going. Demonstrating results is the way to prove this, icebreaker have won several national and global awards over the last 10 years, yet we still struggle to communicate this. The tougher and more uncertain things become the worse this will get: so will get worse before better. Its good to recognise we are all flawed.