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Sunday, March 13, 2011

100-Day Action Plan: Overview

The New-Leader 100-day Action Plan (second edition) by George Bradt, et al., 2009. Reviewed by Steve Gladis, Ph.D., March 2011.

What’s the old Chinese saying about living in interesting times? Transitions are interesting, full of opportunity, and, at the same time, potentially threatening. Whether it’s a high school graduate going off to the first year of college, a new college graduate landing her first job, or a seasoned executive moving to a new company—the first few months of their transitions will be equally exciting and risky. George Bradt, Jayme Check, and Jorge Pedraza (all from Prime Genesis, an executive transition consultancy) have taken out a lot on the risk side with the second edition of their book about the first 100 days of a leader’s transition. What I liked about the book is that it takes the mystery out of executive transition. The stats on executives surviving are more than sobering: Estimates of failure rates are that 40% of executives fail in the first 18 months. Much of the time when executives get bounced out, they scratch their heads, along with the folks who hired them. Often, neither the hiring execs nor the exiting exec fully understand what went wrong. Thus both sides are doomed to repeat the same mistakes again and again at an enormous price, both personally and for the corporation.

George Bradt and his team provide a clear map for the executive looking to come into a company. [If you want to look at how the corporate side should work, read Bradt’s earlier book, Onboarding.] Bottom line, his latest book should be in the hands of any executive who even starts to think about getting a new job and well before taking a call from an executive search firm. I recommend this book to all my clients in transition as a MUST read. The book is divided neatly into sections: Getting a head start BEFORE the new job; crafting your own message as you enter the new job; building your 100 day plan (and your team). Also, the checklists or “Tools” at the end of each chapter are excellent and are bookmarked in my copy. Finally, the authors’ website provides a treasure trove of sources and tools: http://www.onboarding-tools.com.

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