Marshall Goldsmith devoted an entire book to the idea that what got us here won’t get us there, explaining that our recipes for success in the current role need to be changed or adapted when we move to a new role. While transitions offer a chance to prime the air and unlock performance in any organization, they are also challenging times because any missteps made during the first three months of a new role require a lot of subsequent effort to rebuild relationships, change perceptions and correct the course towards performance.
How you consciously manage your transition will therefore determine whether you succeed or fail. In our experience there are three key reasons why leaders fail in a new role: failure to contextualize, stakeholder blindness andabdication of power. Leaders who rush to apply known recipes to a new environment which they insufficiently understand, who fail to acknowledge the importance of human connections for advancing a strategic agenda or who get overwhelmed by the complexities of the new role to the point they become indecisive end up with heightened personal struggles accompanied by worse than expected results.
What we do is take each new leader through a process of building awareness for the new role before we move to developing a relevant vision for her or his mandate and finally we accompany her or him in making the first decisive steps towards implementing this vision. In doing so, we connect the assessment results to the cultural, operational and strategic requirements of the new role in a way that increases confidence and supports personal growth.