I was recently having a terrific conversation with a Director in a local government organisation who was in the process of recruiting a new manager into her team. The conversation centred around how important it was to ensure this new Manager came in to an environment that set her up for success.

When discussing success, it was important for the Director that she was proactive in creating this environment for success for the new Manager.  That is, set up the first 90 days in a constructive manner that really ensured that the Manager would be proactive and not reactive to assist in creating a terrific impression with her new team, organisation and key stakeholders.  This is important for all new Managers given that we don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.  First impressions count for new Managers and it will largely influence the effectiveness and perception of that Manager for the long term.

CircumplexThe organisation that the Director works for is a significant user of the Human Synergistics circumplex.
Given this, we brainstormed the key items/actions/meetings/documents that the new Manager required and mapped them against the four constructive styles in the circumplex.  The output from this session is provided below:

Blog - setting up new managers table

When you analyse the information that we put in each style, notice the focus on the proactive items ie business plans, meetings locked in, expectations clear etc…  All these items require proactive leadership both from the Director and new Manager along with a focus on really analysing what is important for setting up for success.  The other key ingredient is getting a balance right between people and task in ensuring there is necessary time for building key relationships, understanding the team, the environment and the organisation.  There is a lot to be said for ensuring that this balance is focussed on in the first 90 days with support provided by the Director in ensuring this occurs.

Setting up new managers for success is an important area for Directors and General Managers to focus on.  By spending a little time to do this, you will ensure that your new Manager who you have invested a lot of time and money in to has the greatest chance of being successful.  This template above will hopefully assist in starting you on the right path!