Sunderland chairman Niall Quinn insists the club are not going to rush their appointment of a new manager.
Wigan's Steve Bruce has emerged as one of Sunderland's targets to replace Ricky Sbragia.
The Black Cats moved for Bruce after it emerged he would be keen to move to the Stadium of Light.
But as yet the two clubs have not agreed terms, and Sunderland have stepped back by insisting that they are not in a hurry.
"It would be foolish for us to jump in and go for the first name available," said Quinn, who remains as chairman despite Ellis Short's buy-out of the club.
"There's a process to be gone through and the main part of that process is identifying someone who is available and who will bring a different mentality, a mentality that puts the heart outside the jersey, so you can see the effort and commitment of the players.
"They would have to change the mentality in the dressing room, everything will rub off on that, so we need a strong character, hopefully with plenty of experience of doing that, who can spot a good player.
"We need people who will buy into being a Sunderland player, because we've made a few mistakes in the past.
"Someone who can lead, with a stronger, tougher mentality, who can make men out of the talented players we've got."