Used to be that if you heard the term “on-boarding,” someone was leaving on a plane, train or ship.
Today, on-boarding has become part of the corporate lexicon and refers to the first 90 days spent in a job. For a newly hired exec, it’s the best time to establish the image of “executive presence.”
As the saying goes, “You only get one chance to make a good first impression.”
How you act and react during the on-boarding phase is critical. You will be observed and evaluated up, down and sideways. And, as any executive coach knows, it’s a lot easier to set a positive tone from inception than it is to try and change perceptions later on.
A new position gives you a golden opportunity to shine. Observe what’s going on around you, assess the situation, adjust your objectives, determine your needs and draft a plan to meet them … before taking any actions.
And right from the start, show executive presence by being the leader others want you to be.
- Honest … maintain candor. Constructively deliver both positive and difficult messages.
- Open … don’t pre-judge. Your objective is to listen, learn and understand the views of others.
- Confident … a calm “comfortable in your skin” attitude. Never an arrogant “I told you so” stance.
- Thoughtful and thorough … always reflect and contemplate. Don’t “shoot from the hip.”
- Energetic and enthusiastic … a “can-do” attitude at all times.
- Consistent … be predictable. Follow through. People react poorly to mixed reactions.
- Accessible and interested … personally engage with all your coworkers.
The journey one takes in a new job begins on day one and those with executive presence travel the furthest.