We are in our third week of our summer development series and I hope you have been able to carve out some time for rest, family, and a fresh look at your life and your leadership. This week I want to introduce you to a great resource for your development as a leader.
The First 90 Days is a great book if you are beginning a new leadership role or if you need to reset your leadership for a fresh start (and be sure to enter the giveaway below for a chance to win a copy for yourself).The First 90 Days is a great book if you're beginning a new leadership assignment or if you need to reset it. Click To Tweet
This book was particularly helpful to me when I had a new leadership assignment and felt overwhelmed and unsure of where to start. I had a new area of business to learn, a new market, new customers, and to top it off the business had been underperforming for several years. Where would I start? This book helped me chart an intentional plan that helped me establish myself as a leader early and set the course for a successful turnaround for our team.
Here are six of the top take aways from The First 90 Days:
1. Promote yourself.
You are the leader so be intentional about stepping into your new role. If you have been promoted within your company, this will mean mentally and emotionally letting go of your past role and stepping fully into your new role.
2. Map out a plan.
This is so basic but it’s a game changer in establishing yourself as a leader. Plan what you will do your first day, your first week, your first month, and your first ninety days. Be specific and intentional. Executing a ninety-day plan can anchor your leadership for years to come.
3. Accelerate your learning.
Any new leadership position requires new learning. I had tons to learn about trade publishing, about multiple retail channels, about competitor publishers, and about my new team. The first ninety days of your leadership must include an aggressive learning plan. The book will give you several key areas of learning but you must customize it for you. I did an employee survey, listening session, financial analysis on each line of business, market analysis, and even looked into the history of the organization. This aggressive learning provided valuable insight as we reset our strategy for the future.
4. Match strategy to your team.
You need to know the state of your organization before you set your leadership strategy. The author identifies several possible organizational conditions that require different kinds of leadership: a turnaround organization, sustaining success, realignment, a start up, or an organization that needs to be shut down. Knowing first the state of your business will determine how you need to lead it. Know your organization first and then lead based on the need. My team needed a realignment and knowing this helped me make the right decisions to lead us to success.
5. Secure early wins.
Early wins can be about people, culture, as well as business success. Early wins will begin to set the momentum for your team to move forward. I did several things from closing down a line of business that didn’t fit our strategy to starting a new line that did. I also began to work on developing key leaders, monthly meetings for alignment of strategy and unity of focus, and added an annual family picnic. All these were early wins that began to show strong results.
6. Build your team.
It is critical that you have the right team to move your organization forward. Making people decisions will be one of the most critical decisions of any leader. Watkins gives practical help for assessing your team and will also push you to make the people decisions early in your leadership for the most effective outcomes. To be successful, you must have the right leadership team in place. Set your criteria for your team and put the people around you that align with your strategy. It will take courage but will make all the difference in your team’s success. Lead!Here are six of the top take aways from The First 90 Days for your Summer Leadership Development plan: Click To Tweet
There are so many other practical helps in this book. It is a must for your leadership library.
“Plans fail when there is no counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” Proverbs 15:22
Read the book and let us know how it helped you in your leadership.
Catchup on our Summer Leadership Development series:
- Fervent by Priscilla Shirer – Season 4, Episode 2 Selma on Leadership
- Summer Development Focus – 10 Reasons to Take Your Prayer Life Seriously
- Summer Development Plan – Season 4, Episode 1 Selma on Leadership
- 4 Reasons to Take a Leadership Pause this Summer