Simpson led Carlisle to two successive promotions
Paul Simpson's arrival as a Championship manager as the new boss of Preston could rightly be described as a baptism of fire.
No sooner had Simpson put a foot in the Deepdale door in June then star defender Claude Davis was on his way to Sheffield United, shortly to be followed by Tyrone Mears to West Ham United.
Most of the club's backroom staff packed their bags and joined departing manager Billy Davies at Derby County.
And assistant manager David Kelly could not make up his mind where to work and so remains on gardening leave while his future is resolved.
Worse still was a crippling injury list which deprived Simpson of Youl Mawene, Brian O'Neil, Callum Davidson, Brett Ormerod and Adam Nowland.
In some early games Simpson had just 15 fit players to select from and also had to contend with the constant speculation surrounding a pre-deadline move for top striker David Nugent.
Not surprisingly, Simpson admitted: "There was more to deal with than I expected."
But the 40-year-old has never been afraid of hard work, as he showed by cutting his managerial teeth at Rochdale and then impressively resurrecting the fortunes of Carlisle United.
And Simpson, a former playing favourite at Manchester City and Blackpool, is relishing his latest challenge in the north-west.
The players' attitude has changed in the last few weeks and it is great to see that they are really keen to make it a success
He told BBC Sport: "It is a fantastic club. Nothing has changed on that since I came here and it's a wonderful level of football to be competing in.
"A lot of changes had to be made, but that is part-and-parcel of football and you just get on with it. I'm delighted with the staff I have got in place.
"There have been a lot of changes on the management, coaching and playing side and we have to make sure we keep moving the club forward, which we are all trying to do."
That is no easy task at a club which has promised to over-achieve in recent seasons, only to fall at the final hurdle.
Under Davies, a third successive Scot to hold the reins following on from David Moyes and Craig Brown, Preston twice reached the play-offs.
That makes it a tough legacy for Simpson to follow, particularly as Preston are not among the biggest spenders in the league.
To replace Davis and Mawene, Simpson went shopping at Colchester and Peterborough to land Liam Chilvers and Sean St Ledger.
Preston signed Mellor from Liverpool on deadline day
Both have delighted their new boss but it was not until transfer deadline day and the acquisition of Liverpool striker Neil Mellor did Preston deliver the kind of signing their fans were hoping for.
"The expectations do stay the same. But they do from me as well. I want to be successful," Simpson said.
"There are some very strong sides in the league. We all know that and we have to make sure we are considered a strong side as well."
And after an understandably low-key start, which has produced one win and one defeat from the first five League games, Simpson feels he is getting his message across.
"The players' attitude has changed in the last few weeks and it is great to see that they are really keen to make it a success," he said.
"When a new manager comes in there is always something different that is going to happen.
"From what I have seen and been told the players were not allowed to have their own minds and their own views.
The foundations are looking a bit more solid and as long as we keep building on that that and keep improving we will not go far wrong
"But I want them to have an input and to be able to speak to each other and be relaxed and comfortable with each other.
"What they were doing before was successful, but that's not my way and I would not try to be anybody else.
"It has just taken a little bit of time for them to understand what I am about and what Dennis (Booth) and Billy Barr are about."
Simpson added: "Their attitude in the last two or three weeks has been terrific and we have had some decent results.
"Like every manager you think you should have had more points and we should have won our two home games, which would have been four points extra.
"But the foundations are looking a bit more solid and as long as we keep building on that that and keep improving we will not go far wrong."