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ERIC Number: EJ932070
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0748-478X
Clean Break
Peterson, Erin
CURRENTS, v37 n2 p22-25 Feb 2011
An interim president has to perform a particularly difficult balancing act. He or she shoulders the burdens from--or legacy of--the previous president and must also provide a foundation of stability for the new president. Throughout the process, effective communication--both internally and externally--is critical to ensuring a smooth transition. Although interim leadership is not necessarily a growing trend in academe, there will always be a need for temporary leadership at colleges and universities. The demand on an interim leader is intense, particularly at the outset of the presidency. Nearly any new interim president will have external audiences clamoring for his or her time, whether it's the media, elected officials, or campus constituencies. But in the beginning, the campus community--students, faculty, and staff members--is the most important audience to address. And because the role of interim president is often the result of a significant change on campus, most leaders will want to start by communicating the stability that still exists within the institution. While communication with the campus community is a top priority, outside stakeholders, from alumni and donors to the media and elected officials, should get plenty of attention also. For entering interim leaders, meeting early with the communications staff is critical for crafting an appropriate communications strategy. No matter how smooth the transition from leader to leader, permanent or interim, communications challenges will always exist. However, by maintaining--even increasing--the communication between the president and internal and external audiences, communications professionals can help interim leaders put the institution on a strong footing for the next president. Interim presidents can--and should--make it clear that the institution continues to advance its mission. They can do that with communication that is clear, constant, and easy to understand.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Administrators
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Idaho; Missouri; North Dakota