Call them the seven deadly sins of new executives.
Topping the list of the most common blunders senior managers make in their first 100 days is failing to establish strategic priorities, say 24 per cent of respondents to an in-house survey by executive recruitment agency Korn/Ferry.
Other goofs identified by the recruiters were:
* committing cultural gaffes and/or political suicide, 16 per cent
* waiting too long to implement change, 16 per cent
* not spending enough “face time” with subordinates, 14 per cent
* getting sidetracked by “fire drills,” 11 per cent
* hesitating to make tough personnel decisions, 10 per cent
* failing to find out what predecessors did and didn’t do right, nine per cent.
Exactly one-quarter of Korn/Ferry recruiters said the one thing, above all else, that senior executives must do in their first 100 days in order to succeed is assemble and solidify a team.
“There is tremendous pressure for new CEOs and other senior-level executives to sift through a multitude of issues, agendas and opinions,” said Joe Griesedieck, vice-chairman of Korn/Ferry.
“The most successful executives cut through the clutter, isolate their strategic priorities early and plot a course of action to set them in motion. This is critical because the first 100 days present a unique opportunity to disturb the status quo.”
The survey also looked at what qualities recruiters feel are most important to a senior executive’s success in a new position:
* people skills, 44 per cent
* values and behaviour that match the organization’s, 38 per cent
* well-matched skill set, nine per cent
* ability to act quickly, six per cent
* functional experience, two per cent
* industry experience, one per cent.
The Executive Recruiter Index was based on a quarterly survey of 183 Korn/Ferry consultants conducted online within the Americas, Europe and Asia/Pacific between August 4 and August 17.