Blog Post

Creating a Career Campaign: The Settled and Wondering


Creating a Career Campaign

Now that you are settled and wondering, you need to know how to navigate the critical first six months. The sobering news is that leaders fail in newly promoted roles about 40% of the time. You may be wondering, what are the enemies to your success now that you have landed that ideal role and are expected to lead.

In our first two installments of this three-part series on crafting a career campaign, we talked about New Year’s resolutions and how to make them a reality and then getting in the game and being focused on seeking the right job.

Let’s continue our series. Recall that we are focusing these installments on where you may be on your path. There’s something for everyone to learn, but today we concentrate on “The Settled and Wondering.”


Which are you?

  1. The Passive Aspirer – I’m NOT in an active job search but have career aspirations. If this is you go back and read Part 1!
  2. The Focused Seeker – I know the job I want, but I need help a creating a campaign to seek it.
  3. The Settled and Wondering – I’ve got the job, what now?

A new role is stressful! But the good news is, you can proactively manage the transition to significantly reduce the risk of failure. It is imperative to understand why so many promoted leaders fail in new roles and how can you make sure the odds aren’t stacked against you. Let’s call these obstacles the “enemies” of success in your new role.

“I wonder what enemies to my success exist in the first few months as a leader.”

YOU…and your stress behaviors!

First and foremost, we should be introspective to make sure we aren’t getting in our own way. Is it not apropos that we must first look within to discover our susceptibility for failure? In time, we learn that we have to be aware of our own stress behaviors and how to manage them.  It is critical because if you give in to your stress behaviors in a new role, you may inadvertently turn people off or cause people to feel disconnected from you as a leader! This stress behavior seldom inspires others to follow.

Yielding to the Chaos

With so many demands and so little time, is it any wonder that transitioning to a new role feels chaotic?! Yielding to the Chaos occurs when a leader does not allow the time to learn comprehensively about the business and its complexities, and instead becomes consumed by the crisis of the day — day after day. Rather than assessing the needs of the business and allowing essential time for learning before leading, the leader becomes mired in the minutia.

Misreading Culture Cues

Whether you have been hired to build upon success, or to lead change, learning about the culture is key. A leader can miss essential culture cues that affect ultimate success or failure by underestimating the importance of understanding and adapting to the culture before trying to lead change in a significant way. With this enemy, we gain perhaps the most important insight since this is the enemy that is most likely to cause failure.

Misfiring with your Manager

It’s impossible to overstate the critical importance of developing an effective relationship with your manager and “firing on all cylinders”! Research from Gallup as well as Development Dimensions International (DDI), suggests that approximately 70% of an employee’s satisfaction on the job (and whether or not they leave the company) is tied to this relationship.

Unfortunately, many managers don’t even realize the lack of connection is happening, and they certainly don’t wish it to happen; they simply go about their overwhelming myriad of meetings and responsibilities, heads down, getting the job done.

Know Your Enemies and Conquer Them

You have worked so hard to find your new role. The final step in your career campaign is to avoid sabotaging that hard work with poor assimilation to the new role. The costs of failure are immeasurable in human term and certainly costly in economic terms. In fact, this list is incomplete. There are more potential pitfalls Despite the failure rate and its toll, leaders are typically expected to make important career transitions with little or no support. Actively seek out advice from those you trust and be aware.

  1. This series of blogs posts, detailing all seven enemies you’ll need to overcome in a new role and as a new leader.
  2. Another good resource is the book, The Ascending Leader which takes the deepest dive into all seven of the enemies

Additional resources for Your (or someone else’s) Career Campaign…

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