Gareth Southgate, currently managing the Under 21’s, has been asked to step up to the plate and manage England for the next 4 games. The FA have made it clear that, if his performance is up to par, the position could be made permanent. The role demands strong leadership and the utmost respect for the integrity of the game. Few doubt Southgate’s commitment to the latter, and many praise his strength of character, but he himself expresses concern that he may not have the extensive leadership experience that such a high profile role demands.
Moving into a new leadership position is always a challenge – even without the eyes of the world dissecting your every move – and when you have a relatively short window of opportunity to prove yourself and make your mark it is vital that you ‘hit the ground running’. For most new leaders, the general expectation is that they should start to add value within 3 months of joining a new organisation. We outline some critical steps that leaders should take within their first 90 days to make a real impact:
- PREPARE YOURSELF FOR THE NEW CHALLENGE
Take a mental break (and a physical break if at all possible) from your old role and prepare to start afresh and take charge in your new position
- ACCELERATE YOUR LEARNING
Identify where and who to go to ensure that you understand the markets, products, technology, systems, structure, culture and politics of your new organisation – quickly!
- MATCH YOUR STRATEGY TO THE SITUATION
Diagnose the business situation accurately and clarify where the challenges and opportunities lie. This is essential preparation for developing an effective business plan
- NEGOTIATE SUCCESS
Build a productive working relationship with your most important stakeholder – your new boss!
- SECURE SOME EARLY WINS
Early wins build your credibility, increase your confidence and start to build momentum
- ACHIEVE ALIGNMENT
Bring the organisational or team structure into alignment to allow for effective implementation of strategy
- BUILD YOUR TEAM
Evaluate, restructure if necessary, make the tough decisions required quickly to secure success
Ensure that you help everyone in the organisation to accelerate their own transitions as they adjust to having you as a new leader or key member of the team.
- CREATE COALITIONS
Influence those outside your direct line of control to ensure success
- KEEP YOUR BALANCE
Do not lose perspective and become isolated – seek trusted counsel and support