• I’m in a new leadership position. Can you give me some advice?

    I’ve just accepted my first assignment as a Chief Administrative Officer. I’ve been a senior manager for 10 years and spent another 10 years working my way through a number of technical positions in two different organizations. Is there any advice you can offer me as I set out in this new position?

    I’ve walked in your shoes and surprisingly asked a mentor of mine a similar question when I stepped into the same role. The advice that was offered to me is the same I would suggest that you consider following:

    1. During the first 30-60 days take your time and avoid making any drastic decisions without the benefit of sufficient information or data.
    2. Take the time to observe the interactions of the people in your organization – gather as much information through the process. Ask questions – but make them open ended questions – be personable – demonstrate the fact that you are genuinely interested in the people and the work they do.
    3. Above all avoid the crutch of trumpeting how things were done in your last place of employment. Really do you think the folks are going to embrace being preached about how great the last place you worked at was and how you plan to duplicate that same environment here? It won’t happen so don’t even attempt that approach.
    4. Finally once you have taken the time to listen, reflect on what you heard – note what makes this organization such an attractive one – determine how you can work collaboratively with your team to help them be successful. Take it slow and don’t push a large change agenda – remember that the only way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time! (It’s an expression – seriously no elephants were harmed in the preparation of this article)

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