Whether it is owners looking for a return on their investment or supporters demanding an upturn in fortunes, bosses across the country operate in a cut-throat business.
Patience is a commodity lost on too many clubs in the modern era, with changes in the dugout made on an increasingly regular basis.
Clarke appreciates that he must continue to deliver at The Hawthorns if he is to keep his job, with a run of one win in four enough to cast doubt over his long-term future.
He told the Express and Star: "People who own a club are entitled to do what they want. Sometimes there are some human casualties.
"Now, if you get two years, you've done well. The average time for a manager is 14 or 15 months. You have to learn to deal with it.
"They don't run the club just to have two or three good years in the Premier League, they run it to sustain it over a number of years."
Clarke, who inherited the Baggies' reins in June 2012, added: "I'm not going to say you don't get some frustration when you see a club you think are at a similar level spending more than you, but you come in with your eyes wide open.
"We've already lost a couple of managers, and this is before you're really into the meat of the season.
"You are sitting on the sidelines and you know that the vultures are starting to circle. We need to start winning games."