To ensure that senior managers and executive do not join the 40% who fail in new roles we have developed the New Executive Program. We integrate proven methods from executive coaching with research on key reasons for failure and ways to avoid them. The program involves members of the company and the new executive before the first day on the job. In collaboration with the leader and others we develop an in-depth understanding of the culture, explicit and implicit expectations, business and organizational challenges, and team members. The new leader engages in a rigorous self-assessment to uncover his/her style of entry and transition – how it works and how it doesn’t. The process creates opportunities for direct feedback which in turn allows the executive to course correct before it is too late. The coaching relationship continues for 6 – 9 months, concluding with an assessment of progress and recommendations for the future. The following phases are included:
Phase 1 – Preparation
The coach meets with key decision makers and others as required to understand the company leadership and culture, expectations, business imperatives, and the new executives’ background, as well as any concerns.
The client, coach, hiring executive or board member, and human resource officer meet to discuss the coaching process, approach, roles, expectations and agree to the coaching contract.
Phase 2 – Initial Self and Organizational Assessments
Part 1 of this phase uncovers the executives strengths and weakness in relation to challenges of the new role and company culture described in Part 2. In part 3 potential derailers are identified and ways to avoid them are developed.
Part 1 – Self Assessment
Prior to starting the new position, the coach takes the client through a self assessment that focuses on his/her leadership, history of professional and other life transitions – what has worked and what hasn’t. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is administered along with other assessments that prove helpful. The coach and executive discuss factors that will help and those that will interfere with a successful transition. Together they review actions that will reduce or eliminate potential mis-steps.
Part 2 – Organizational Assessment
The first team (direct reports to the executive), by way of a facilitated group meeting, identifies business and organizational challenges and opportunities; potential land-mines; what’s worked in the past and what hasn’t; critical elements of the executive’s role; and the company culture. This conversation also accelerates development of the relationship between the team and the new leader.
Part 3 – Derailers
The executive and coach analyze gaps between the self-assessment and demands related to the business/organizational assessment. Together they identify potential for and steps to avoid derailment.
Phase 3 – Integration Plan
The coach and client produce a written plan including coaching goals, methods, expected results, support required, gaps between what is needed and the executive’s strengths and weaknesses as identified in the initial assessment. A plan for developing key relationships is included.
They client, coach and hiring executive (and HR leader as appropriate) meet to review, modify and agree to the plan.
Phase 4 – Implementation and Learning
This phase includes a maximum of 4- 6 one-on-one coaching sessions of 60 – 90 minutes primarily in person, but by phone as necessary.
Phase 5 – Final Assessment and Recommendations
The coach conducts a series of interviews with key stakeholders (direct reports, manager, board members, peers, customers) to assess integration. The client and coach review findings and recommendations. A follow up meeting may include those who play a role in supporting the executive.
Phase 6 – Ending
At the end of the engagement the coach, client and hiring executive (HR leader as appropriate) meet to review results, provide feedback on the process, identify long term development goals, and bring an end to the coaching engagement.
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