At a gathering of the LERN Consulting Team, Russ Mills discussed the work he was engaged in as a continuing education interim leader. Mills’ experiences and success strategies demonstrated the return-on-investment of using a LERN consultant during transitional periods, administrative absences, and when a continuing education program is in need of improving performance.
When Mills was asked the most important reasons to have a LERN continuing education interim, he shared the following list:
- You have a team member completely versed in LERN’s best practices, benchmarks, and trends.
- The interim leader has immediate access to additional LERN resources such as other LERN consultants, tools, and research.
- Your program is able to tap into an outside perspective, supported by years of actual hands-on work.
- As a team member, the interim leader is committed to lifelong learning and is able to communicate to central administration why your program is important and needs central administration’s support.
- The interim leader is experienced in continuing education course programming, marketing, contract sales, and operations.
- You have someone who is willing to help you make hard decisions and with the skill set to implement the decisions.
- Your program now has expertise and commitment to program financial accountability and self-supporting business based on proven principles.
- The interim leader is skilled at creating new job functions and job descriptions and in reorganizing and restructuring staff for greater efficiencies.
- Your program has an advocate who can raise visibility and awareness of continuing education at the institution, encouraging internal partnerships.
- A continuing education expert able to lead the recruitment and hiring processes as an advisor, search committee chair, or as a final interviewer for Dean, Program Director, Marketing Director, and Operations Director positions.
- You have a person who is skilled in serving as the leader in the transition from acting leadership to permanent leadership through professional development, training, networking, and mentoring.
LERN is projecting 25-50% of continuing education institutions will be shut down, decentralized, or merged during this decade. A program falling into the challenged 25-50% group may have no choice, but to lean on LERN for support while the top 50% will utilize LERN to increase their market share, financial performance, and position within the institution.
For more information about LERN interim services, contact Layne Harpine at firstname.lastname@example.org.