Monday, August 20, 2007

I'm from Head Office and I'm here to help...

When first visiting offices you’ve never been to before you generally get one of three receptions. Either people are generally welcoming and want to be helpful to the new boss, if a bit nervous at what your opinion might be. Or, they are overly welcoming, but just put in the time with you before going back to their normal day to day, ignoring anything you might say or do. Or finally, they are openly antagonistic. The first is the most usual, closely followed by the second, the third is rare but perhaps the most honest..

Time will tell, but I’d judge I met more of the first than the second, and none of the third in the US. There’s a lot more of these meet and greet visits lined up, so time will tell. My position is a new one, for once in my career I’m not filling dead men’s shoes (a horrible term for taking over the job of someone just sacked, but all the more true because of it). The people I met where openly curious what I’d do, or where I’d take things.

That’s good. It gives me an edge I can use quickly. Also, because the function I’m taking over was fragmented and unorganised, there’s a lot I can do quickly to make an impact. Little things that aren’t hard, but people will notice.

Unfortunately there is also a lot of hard things to do. A lot of them. A big lot of them. The trick I’m going to have to pull is getting some consensus of what to prioritise, what to work on first. My brain is working overtime starting to work that out, and I still have a lot of countries to visit. But, the good news is I’m feeling pretty confident about it all. Its going to be hard work, but the chance of success is high.

So, on we go…


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