Video: Step 4 Fuzzy Front End Steps
To begin Step 4, please watch the video above.
Jump-start building key relationships and accelerate your learning. The time to conduct prestart meetings and phone calls is now, before you start. The impact you can make by reaching out to critical stakeholders before you start is incalculable. Yet some executives are surprisingly reluctant to set up those meetings. They often expect to encounter resistance, but rarely do.
Utilize New Job Prep Worksheet #4 in your work packet.
By working through this topic and communicating with key stakeholders early on, you will realize that the answers you get to questions before you actually start will be different from the answers you get after you start. You are not yet an employee or boss. You are just someone looking to make a connection and learn. These answers you get during the Fuzzy Front End almost always prove exceedingly valuable after Day One.
Reference the guidelines below to help you complete the worksheet.
Additional Option: Download and “play” this PowerPoint (hit “play from the start” in the “slide show” tab at the top of PowerPoint) to help you fill in Worksheet #4 on navigating the fuzzy front end: Step4-FuzzyFrontEnd.ppt
1. Personal Set Up
Address the steps you’re going to take to ensure someone else gets your office ready.
o Regarding your resources: office, desk, computer, log-ins, IDs, phones, etc.
o Include steps you or others are going to take to get your family set up before you start – especially if you’re moving.
2. Jump-Start Learning
Write down what you’re going to do to jump-start your learning.
o Things like reading annual plans, analyst reports, competitive reports, market research, etc.
o Particularly focused on what’s different in your new organization versus your last.
3. Announcement Cascade
Write down how you’re going to manage the announcement cascade and others’ sensitivities to this information.
o Make sure those emotionally impacted by the change hear first, one-on-one so they can emote.
o Ensure those directly impacted by the change hear next in small groups so they can ask questions and those indirectly impacted hear later
4. Jump-Start Key Relationships
Identify those you will:
o Meet live in advance
o Phone in advance
Follow Up Actions
Action 1: Set up on the home front
Action 2: Get your office set up
Action 3: Jump-start learning (situation assessment, role priorities, role resources, role risks
Action 4: Schedule and implement detailed announcement cascade
Action 5: Schedule and complete live meetings with most important key stakeholders in advance of day one
Action 6: Schedule and complete phone calls with other key stakeholders in advance of day one
- Read George’s New Leader’s Playbook Articles on Forbes.com. Particularly helpful articles at this stage are on how MasterCard’s Ajay Banga took advantage of his Fuzzy Front End or The Amazing Advantage of a Running Head Start or Follow this Nobel Prize Winner’s Advice as an Executive Onboarding into a New Role
- See second chapter of The New Leader’s 100-Day Action Plan on, amazingly enough, Leverage the Fuzzy Front End