Congratulations to your new job!
You have demonstrated your capability and your intelligence. You have impressed people and gained their trust that you have what it takes to perform in this role. That’s why they have given this high responsibility role to you and not to someone else. Now, you are expected to take the organization to the next level and produce a high ROI.
These high expectations are usually based on your past successes though. The higher you move up the corporate ladder, the more external confirmation you receive that you are doing things right. And you are receiving less honest and less candid feedback from the people around you because many are depending on you. Your view of reality may become easily distorted as you move up the ranks. “90% of executives believe they are among the top 10% of talent in their organization…”
With all this positive reinforcement (and little honest feedback) you may be convinced that you are perfectly on track. The reality, however, is that there is always room for improvement, and as a leader in transition, you would be wise to define your next development steps early.
Whilst we looked at what competencies you need to develop and what tasks you have to let go off in trap #4, today we want you to consider your personal (mis-)behaviors. Behaviors that may have been tolerated in your previous job, but which could now seriously sabotage your new role and ultimately your career.
The trap that lies before you is this: believing your own hype. Your new role, your new job title, none of those things make you invincible. They leave you even more exposed and under scrutiny, such that habits that were just a little irritating in the past may now be magnified to epic proportions.
How can you do this? Well, it all starts with self-awareness. When coaching executives, I frequently refer to Marshall Goldsmith’s brilliant book “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There”. Goldsmith identified 21 habits that keep leaders from getting “there”:
- Winning too much
- Adding too much value
- Passing judgement
- Making destructive comments
- Starting with ‘no’, ‘but’, or ‘however’
- Telling the world how smart we are
- Speaking when angry
- Negativity, or ‘let me explain why that won’t work’
- Withholding information
- Failing to give proper recognition
- Claiming credit that we don’t deserve
- Making excuses
- Clinging to the past
- Playing favorites
- Refusing to express regret
- Not listening
- Punishing the messenger
- Passing the buck
- An excessive need to be ‘me’
- Goal obsession
Time for some honest reflection: does any of these habits sound even remotely like you? If yes (and it might be that more than just one applies to you), there are probably a number of people out there right now complaining about the bad things you ‘always’ do.
Remember that each of these habits can keep you from performing to your own expectations and those of others. As a worst case scenario, they may end your career right here, and what you expected to be a step up might turn into a step out.
How can you deal with this? Well, I recommend you get Marshall Goldsmith’s book and not just read it, but really work your way through it.
Actively seek input from your staff and colleagues, perhaps using a 360 degree feedback process, or ask those people who are most likely to be candid with you for input.
Don’t be shy to ask for help: work with a trusted advisor or an executive coach to help you through this process, and to make sure you really embed new behaviors. Behavioral change can be challenging, but may be a prerequisite to perform and develop further.
May you hit the ground running and create the right impact in your first 180 days by overcoming your bad habits!
If you would like an individual consultation on how to hit the ground running and create the right impact, contact me now:
phone: +66-2 107 2025