Interim succession: Temporary leadership in the midst of the perfect storm

Christine H. Mooney, Matthew Semadeni, Idalene F. Kesner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The corporate governance environment has changed. The rate of CEO successions is naturally trending up, succession planning is in dire need of repair, and boards are under increasing pressure to focus on oversight. This confluence of events creates a 'perfect storm.' Within this new environment, interim successions are on the rise. But is it all bad news? This article explores the decision of corporate directors to use temporary chief executive officers (CEOs) and the roles served by these interim leaders. We include a typology of interim CEOs and prescribe the contexts in which organizations can strategically pursue this type of succession. We conclude with a list of recommendations for how boards can most effectively manage interim leadership in the new corporate governance environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)621-633
Number of pages13
JournalBusiness Horizons
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Board decision making
  • CEO succession
  • Corporate governance
  • Interim leadership
  • Leadership pipeline
  • Succession planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Marketing


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