I just finished Week 2 of a new job where I'm starting out using the MT approach from the beginning. Here's a rundown on how it's going.
I'm a director in an internal IT function for a high-tech company in Silicon Valley. I have 12 direct reports.
Taking a page from the recent "The First Rule for New Managers", I started O3's the first week. I used a slightly modified version of the email template provided in the first O3 cast to explain to my directs what I was doing and how it would work. I received some positive replies from my new team on the message. I'm currently doing O3's all day Thu and Fri morning. After re-listening to and agreeing with the advice in the O3 casts about not doing them on Friday, I will be rescheduling the Friday O3's to Wednesdays.
Taking another page from "The First Rule for New Managers", I will not start feedback until Week 5. I have been slowly introducing the concept of feedback during O3's. I have not started a group staff meeting yet. Surprisingly, there wasn't one before I arrived, so while I will eventually start one, I don't envision doing it until at least Week 6.
Next I used my boss and my team to generate a list of key contacts in the organization that I should speak to as far as how the team is perceived, how we can help the company succeed, how they keep score and any general advice. Again, I used a slightly modified message based on the template in "Jump Starting Internal Customer Relationships". I have 32 people to interview on the first pass and have received a few more names from those I have already interviewed. I'll probably end up talking with around 40 people before I finish. I got a great response from those I contacted, many saying how much they appreciated my reaching out to them the way I did.
If I had to do it differently, I would have spaced the interviews out a bit more than I have. As it stands, I will have completed almost all of them by the end of the coming week. While it seems trivial to schedule 30 1/2 hour meetings over a 2-week period, in reality I have found myself stuck more than once with back-to-back interviews. In two of those instances, the interviewees wanted to go longer but I could not accommodate them. I will circle back to them after I have completed speaking with everybody.
Having set up both the internal and external dialogues immediately, I can say that I am more up to speed at this company after 2 weeks than I have been at past companies after 2 or 3 months.
For fans of The First 90 Days, I believe I'm faced with a realignment in my new role. While this is supposedly the most difficult role for an outsider manager to succeed in, I remain excitedly optimistic that by continuing to apply the techniques I have been fortunate to learn here that I can not only succeed in this role, but do an outstanding job.
Folks - This stuff really works! If you're not already doing it, start this week!
Mark, Mike and the MT Community - Again, please accept my heartfelt thanks!