Starting Strong: Succeeding in the First 30, 60, and 90 Days of a New Job

June 27, 2024

Starting a new executive role can be both exhilarating and challenging. The first 90 days are crucial as they set the tone for your tenure and influence your long-term success. Here’s a structured approach to navigate this critical period effectively.

The First 30 Days: Understand and Observe

Immerse Yourself in the Company Culture

In your first month, prioritize understanding the company culture. Attend meetings, engage with employees, and absorb the organizational dynamics. Ask questions to learn about unspoken norms and values. Your goal is to fit into the culture while identifying areas where you can introduce positive changes.

Build Key Relationships

Forming strong relationships early on is essential. Schedule one-on-one meetings with your direct reports, peers, and key stakeholders. Listen more than you speak. Understand their roles, challenges, and expectations from you. Building trust and rapport now will pay dividends later.

Assess the Current State

Conduct a thorough assessment of the business. Review financials, study recent performance metrics, and understand ongoing projects. This will help you identify quick wins and long-term strategic goals. Take notes on what’s working well and what needs improvement.

The Next 30 Days: Plan and Strategize

Develop a Strategic Plan

With a solid understanding of the company’s current state, begin drafting your strategic plan. Set clear, measurable goals aligned with the company’s vision. Identify key initiatives and prioritize them based on their impact and feasibility. Ensure your plan addresses both short-term needs and long-term objectives.

Communicate Your Vision

Once your plan is ready, communicate it to your direct leader and then to your team and stakeholders. Clearly articulate your vision, goals, and the steps you intend to take. Be transparent about the changes you plan to implement and why they are necessary. This will help in gaining buy-in and support from your team.

Start Implementing Quick Wins

Identify and implement quick wins that can generate immediate positive outcomes. These should be high-impact actions that can be executed swiftly, demonstrating your ability to drive results. Quick wins build credibility and momentum.

The Final 30 Days: Execute and Refine

Focus on Execution

As you enter the final phase of your first 90 days, shift your focus to execution. Implement the initiatives outlined in your strategic plan. Monitor progress closely and adjust as needed. Be proactive in addressing any roadblocks and keep the momentum going.

Foster a Feedback Culture

Encourage a culture of feedback within your team. Regularly solicit input from your direct reports and peers. Use this feedback to refine your approach and make necessary adjustments. Showing that you value feedback will enhance team engagement and performance.

Evaluate and Reflect

At the end of the 90 days, take time to evaluate your progress. Reflect on what you’ve achieved, the challenges you’ve faced, and the lessons you’ve learned. Use this reflection to refine your strategy and set the stage for continued success.

The Value of an Executive Coach During The First 90 days

Partnering with an executive coach can significantly enhance your transition. Research indicates that 70% of executives who work with a coach report improved work performance, relationships, and communication skills . Additionally, investing in an executive coaching delivers an ROI 6x the cost of coaching . An executive coach provides personalized guidance, helps you navigate challenges, and accelerates your growth, making your first 90 days even more effective.

Conclusion

Starting a new executive job is a critical time filled with opportunities and challenges. By following a structured approach and leveraging the support of an executive coach, you can set a strong foundation for your success. Remember to observe, plan, execute, and continuously refine your strategy to lead your team and organization to new heights.