Three Things You Must Do Immediately As a New Leader
You have 30 days to show your team what you’ve got
I often tell my executive-coaching clients that the first 30 days in a new role are the most critical. That’s the amount of time you have to show your team, your manager, and your colleagues what you’ve got as a leader.
Unfortunately, those first 30 days are already overwhelming. Your calendar is packed with meetings with all of your stakeholders — up, down, across, and all around you. You want to spend more time with your team, but you’re being pulled into strategy sessions with your manager and the executives. Everything shared with you is framed as needing urgent attention, and you may not yet know which tasks are truly critical and which ones can wait a couple of weeks to address. You’re excited about this new gig, but the pace is ruthless. You spend Saturday catching up on some sleep, then get back to it on Sunday morning.
Having worked with hundreds of new leaders in my career, I’ve seen this scenario again and again. Newly promoted leaders experience the pressure, too, even if they have been part of the company for many years. Some anxiety is an inevitable part of every new transition. But I’ve found there are strategies to help you move through the “new leader stage” so that you establish yourself as impactful from the get-go. Here’s what the most successful do to make the most of those first 30 days.
They “pace and space”
New leaders don’t try to get it all done in the first two weeks. They know that achieving important priorities will take time. They respond to the most urgent needs while also carving out time for the longer-term strategy. They give themselves space in their days. They consciously work to avoid days of back-to-back meetings and decline ones without a clear agenda.
They take time to learn
Effective leaders don’t bulldoze their way into a team. Instead, they figure out how to apply their skills and knowledge to the team’s needs. They ask questions. They listen. They know it’s most effective to share their point of view at the right time, within the right context. They test ideas with colleagues and brainstorm with their team. They know they cannot…