In one of my conversation with client, he mentioned that now all the problems will be solved more or less and our Strategic Execution as well as Strategy alignment projects can be initiated. He looked happy so I asked “how?” with a curiosity as I knew there wasn’t anybody to take a lead of any project at leadership level and as a Promoter; he already decided to take back seat so. He said excitedly that it’s a new CEO-with a strategic mind-set, proven success record of driving large scale operations with effusive reference check- A perfect star that can help shining our business, and so we hired. People feel happy when they get a solution of long time problem and so is he with this news.
Exactly after 6 months, he angrily came in our half yearly review meet and stated I don’t thinks so he is right person for our company because nothing is moving how it should & everything is screwed up(due to policy deviation). I asked who, though I was having an idea that he was referring to new leader. He said new CEO and I asked what happened. I gave all the authority to him to drive the business and all the support then also we are not going at desire level. In fact most of the project more or less as is where it was 6 months back, he replied. He was in a state where he could fire or ask him to resign. I am not narrating the whole story here but that’s where these questions came to my mind and I started evaluating -was it really that CEO’s fault of not driving business well? Is he not right person? OR It’s a fault of MD OR what fundamentally went wrong?
There are various reasons because of which senior hiring fails, however, there are some essential reasons I feel to address here from Employer’s end.
Employer’s Mesmerism towards people from successful brand
Is it really a true that if a person is coming from a top/well-known brand so has to be amazing for your company too?
I have seen that Management got mesmerised by the achievement of the person in his/her previous company or the company itself during hiring. It’s like buying Versace suit with a pride that it’s the classic one and the best which can’t be damaged. But we forgot that if you will do rough wash or not as per instruction; it will get damaged. Many SMEs leaders, in fact sometimes large organizations leaders too gets into this trap where they feel that the person is coming with remarkable background so he knows everything and will do everything perfectly. Having confidence is important but blind faith and not validating that person’s direction is foolishness which eventually harms the business.
Not giving enough space to play
This is completely opposite than above. One cant expect miracle overnight and that’s where I always use a phrase that “Every destination involves journey” and some takes its fixed time what it needs, just like “child birth takes nine months”. New leader come on board and management expect everything to be going with some great results in short span or may be in a time which is not sufficient to fetch a particular results. Giving space to the person involves lot of aspects of the business start from trusting the decisions taken by the person to being patient enough for that journey to end and see the final outcome.
Giving freedom of decision making to new leader takes lot of courage for management to have. Surely it is sometimes not easy but it is a necessity.
You can roam wherever and do whatever
Every country has a constitution so system can run smoothly for people; the same way every organization have written or sometime not written constitution. Its not called culture completely but somewhat in that line. This constitution helps organization to regulate in a way where all involved members can live and work in line with ultimate goal. No one is above it-not even management.
When a leadership position gets appointed, management give freedom to them on changing the constitution. Constitution can be changed if organization’s situation demands but it cannot be unknown to the team and overnight where their journey towards goal gets impacted.
Not even Prime Minister or President of the country or King can update constitution without approval of their counsel. The same way organization should strictly go via counsel’s advice before updating/changing constitution for the betterment of its growth.
– Have written constitution for your organization
– Wherever new leaders comes on board give them as he/she going to live it on a daily basis
– If any changes the new person wants to do; have a process to pass those changes
– Plan the changes in small sprint and get results
We will do everything
Paradox may hold you responsible for bigger success & failure both because you want to take some decision and also don’t want to. And if you have taken decision; stand by it.It has been observed that management has taken decision to hire professional leader ,even have hired too but when it comes to delegating work, they have many doubts and they decide to do things by their own. If you have to do all the work by own then why invested money in the hiring unnecessary. Management has to understand that once decision taken; they have to abide it at first psychological level and then physical decorum. You can have paradox but keep it in your head until you see that person(new hired leader) is just not capable to do thing. We will do everything attitude will not work at all.
Not visualizing the entire eco system to make the hiring successful
All the above listed reasons primarily faced by organizations because they are either poor at visualizing the complete eco system or did not consider at all before hiring. Many leaders, authors, writers have written and still writing that how important planning is getting success. When you decide to have professional leader for your organization-the question should not be when we will get leader but it should rather be how we will make the new leader successful in our eco system OR what steps we have to take it into consideration. If management focuses on it; it is sure that chances are higher to make new person successful.
Another biggest myth which management believes is that the newly appointed leader will execute all the projects and will fetch desired results as he is an “expert”. Let’s put out loud that the more you go up on your career ladder; the less you execute. It’s all about directing and not doing. Hence, expecting ground level execution from the person will not lead anything anywhere except disappointment at both sides.
Ultimately, new leader hiring process is not a gambling but its chess playing. Think of everything before placing the person in the organization and organization can reap all the benefits out of it.
Keyuri Patel, an engineer who has mastered refining cultures and leadership, is associated with Jagdish Hirani & Associates as a Project Manager. She is consistently improving the conversion of strategies from design boards to ground team. She has a wide experience consulting organizations in the fields of BFSI, Education, Textile, Outdoor Media, Technology, Garments, Architectural Hardware, Travel and Event Management. Apart from contributing to the consulting projects she is also leading people initiatives at J.Hirani.
Success Mantra “Don’t say “yes” if you are not convinced”. Understand that ultimately it’s your team (not machines, technology, money or product) who drives your organization.
About J.Hirani: J.Hirani is a Strategic Transformation team which works as a growth partner for different organizations in various industries by providing services like Agile transformation, Scenario mapping, Strategic alignment, Balance scorecard, Digital transformation, Incubating new ventures, Operation excellence and Aligning human capital.
©J.Hirani, 6 Rules for a promoter to successfully hire professional CEO, October 2020. All rights reserved.