Interview with Patrick Thorpe. Part 2

  • By Blog Admin
  • 25 Aug, 2016

Interview with Patrick Thorpe: my first years as an Interim Manager 

patrick thorpe
After exploring moving from being an Employee to Self-Employed and then to Business Owner in the articles Are you dreaming of becoming your own boss?   and Moving from self-employed to business owner , here some tips from someone who has actually done it: Patrick Thorpe of Corexis Consulting Limited .
Q4   What business services do you and your business provide?

A4   Facilities management is an interdisciplinary business function that coordinates space, infrastructure, people and organisation to ensure that the non-core services support the businesses key activities.
My marketplace is Facilities Management Consultancy and there are 3 strands to my market offer:

  1. Facilities Management  – offering advice and consultancy on facilities management services offered across multiple sector
  2. Business Consulting  - project delivery for key areas of improvement, including bid management programmes
  3. Interim Management  – hands on, operational and business development support to drive tangible and demonstrable business outcomes
My business is UK-centric and currently the market place is very buoyant, hence there isn’t a great deal of ‘downtime’ currently.
Q5   What is it actually like? Are the benefits and challenges the same as you thought? More/less?

A5   Having now worked ‘as my own boss’ for a number of years, I am convinced that the benefits of working for yourself far outweigh those offered by ‘working for the man!’
  •       You can choose for whom you want to work and know that the assignment has a definitive time period.
  •       You have the ability to choose if you want to commute or work from home – the project/assignment outcome is not dependent on where you work.
  •       You can set your own working hours – and choose when ‘your best time’ of the day is for working.
  •       You have independence and autonomy and you call the shots and make the decisions and have total responsibility for all your action.
  •       You have total control of your cash flow! And when there is an abundance of work you might choose to take a month off between assignments!  
      If the ‘homework’ has been undertaken correctly before plunging into the interim market then there should not be too many challenges that come as unexpected. A clear benefit is to have an experienced mentor/buddy who can advise on the best solutions to counteract the challenges!

Q6   What advice would you give to someone who wants to be an interim?

A6   There are a number of suggestions that I think would be advantageous to someone who wants to become an interim.

  1. Explore every avenue to understand what the transition to the interim market is going to like and how it will affect individual circumstances. Talk to the Interim Management Association (IMA) and Institute of Interim Management (IIM) to gain further insight. Don’t stop talking to anyone/everyone to get advice – they will all have experiences to share.
  2. Evaluate and define your product and construct a business case to justify the market need. Establish the routes to market and investigate the competition – is the market flooded, is there scope for more opportunity and identify the risks.
  3. Decide what interim ‘vehicle’ is to be used – an Umbrella arrangement or the incorporation of a Limited Company. This will take a little time and cost to set up so it needs to be explored fully. Gov.UK is a good source of information to set up a private limited company
  4. Find yourself a good accountant – look for someone local who has a good reputation and steer clear of the large corporate accountancy firms (£450 is the going rate to produce a set of final end-of-year return).
  5. Talk to the likes of ‘Wenta’ who give advice on business start-ups from expert business advisors
  6. Importantly – decide on and establish a financial ‘buffer’ as there will be a possible delay of at least 30 days from completion of the first assignment to getting paid. In addition, anticipate that there might be a delay before realising the first assignment. It is important to build a cash flow early to understand the financial commitments and to budget accordingly.
Q7   What do you enjoy most about it?

A7    The best enjoyment for me is to know that you are running your own business – there are good times and challenging times – but there is nothing like knowing that you are ‘master of your own destiny!’

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