How small changes in your behaviour have a big impact on how you work, lead or follow
That’s the working title of a book I’m writing, initially as a series of short blogs.
Blog 25 small change: your first 100 days
Organisations are more likely to hire you if
- you’re the least risky
- not, necessarily, the best
Blog 19 small change: your first 100 days
Your first 100 days in a new role are special because you:
- can’t have a second first 100 days in the same role, they are unique days
- start with hopes and fears; so do “they”
- hope that all will be well; so do they
- fear that you’ve made a mistake; so do they
- take personal risks and exploit opportunities as the days progress, or not
- make first impressions in/at
- your first email
- and especially in your first decision
Then they – “the jury” will stay out for variable lengths of time.
I have facilitated scores of First 100 Days Programmes and I have found that on average you will probably encounter your first “Amber” or “Red” relationship in your Relationship Grid by Day 15, latest. Although, on one occasion, a client encountered “a Red” by Day 5 because a decision which was taken before he arrived caused a “risk event” in his first week and was now “his baby”.
So be prepared to encounter a troublesome relationship from, as our American friends say, the “get-go”.
When “the jury comes in” you’re stuck with their decision. It will be hard to shift. So make the best of this so-called “honeymoon period”.
Here are 7 Steps to reduce risks and maximise your opportunities in your first 100 days:
First 100 Days; 7 Steps
- Be crystal clear on your purpose, and “theirs” and the link between the two
- Communicate your purpose and the link to theirs in every initial conversation
- Say what you intend to deliver in your first 100 days; under-promise/over-deliver
- Take this unique and fresh opportunity to “small change” your behaviour
- NEVER send a material email/text BEFORE you speak to the recipient
- Listen 70% of the time; speak 30%
- In your first “amber” or “red” encounter ask someone to help you work through your feelings, your needs in relation to those feelings, and your options on how to handle “the amber or red”. Screw this up at your peril.
You will be judged, and “the jury” will make a decision about you at the end of your first 100 days on one primary issue:
- how you dealt with your first amber or red relationship and not on what you delivered. You will receive some leeway for that because of the honeymoon factor.
Your character will be judged on how others felt when you interacted with them
Remember you are judge and jury on them also.
In extremis, you can decide to leave at the end of your first hundred days without too much damage. We all make mistakes. Better to take that tough decision then, when the market will understand. Otherwise, and ideally, you should stay at least two years (in misery) or lose some credibility in the job market.
An even tougher decision is for “them” to accept that they made a mistake in hiring you and ask you to leave before the end of your first hundred days.
I find more often than not that more hiring mistakes are made by hirers than by applicants.
How many people in your organisation do you feel were “poor hires”?
Your answer will be as much a statement about you as about them.