PrimeGenesis has reduced the rate of new leader failure from 40% to 10% by driving three ideas:

  1. Get a head start
  2. Manage the message
  3. Build the team

This past week, yet again, I was reminded of the value of having a 100-day action plan across all three.

Get a Head Start by Putting Together a 100-Day Action Plan

Preparation breeds confidence.  Confidence breeds success. It’s almost a truism.  “The will to win is not nearly as important as the will to prepare to win.”  That quote has been attributed to Vince Lombardi, Joe Paterno, Bobby Knight and almost every other great sport coach that ever tried to get their team to practice.

For a new leader, this comes down to having a plan and getting a head start.  Follow this link for more on 100-day action plans.

Leverage your 100-Day Action Plan to Start a Conversation with your Boss

Many leaders have found their 100-Day Action Plans to be great conversation starters to help manage their message with their bosses and learn more about how they and their bosses are going to work together. 

The first thing we push people to do after one of our live onboarding prep sessions or conversations following the completion of our online onboarding prep tool at is to have a conversation with their boss to get their input into the plan.

We’ve found that bosses typically have one of three reactions

  1. “Don’t do that.  We’ll take care of everything once you get here”
  2. “Love it.  Go for it.”
  3. “Love it.  Let me give you some thoughts on how to make it even better”

These three are listed in reverse order of preference.  If your boss tells you to wait, it’s a strong signal that he or she has a relatively high need for control.  You can bet that’s going to extend beyond just your onboarding plan.

If your boss tells you to go forward without comment, either your plan is perfect (highly unlikely), or your boss is going to have a bias to loose management and coaching, leaving you on your own to sink or swim.

If your boss supports you and gives you input, that’s a sign that he or she really wants to partner with you.  First prize!

Leverage your 100-Day Action Plan to Build the Team

Your 100-Day Action Plan is the, or at least one of the first things you’re going to do in your new job – even before day one.  If you ask other team members up, across, and down for help refining your plan, that is an act of vulnerability.  As Brene Brown describes, there’s real power in vulnerability in building relationships.

Net, craft your plan in advance as part of getting a head start, managing the message, AND building the team.

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