Onboarding slashes executive failure rate

Posted by on Apr 30, 2012 in OnBoarding, Uncategorized

It’s not unusual for top companies to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to recruit a new Chief Executive Officer who lasts less than two years.

Roughly 40 percent of new executive hires fail within the first 18 months, according to Forbes. In that period, a $500K-a-year executive who can’t cut the mustard can cost his or her company $5 million in soft and hard costs, industry experts say. We like how Ray Williams summed up in Psychology Today  the pressure cooker new executives often find themselves in:

“Borrowers have grace periods. Married couples have their honeymoons. And new leaders have long had their ‘first 100 days.’ For CEOs, at least, that’s the approximate time between a new job’s starting date and various types of reckoning. But that window of forgiveness, often characterized by promises to go on listening tours and polite calls for patience from stakeholders, is getting shorter. In today’s era of increasingly active investors, watchers and critics, the heightened focus on fast results is making the first few months feel more like a trial by fire than a honeymoon.”

So, why the high failure rate? Largely it’s because of a new executive’s inability to adapt to a new organization’s culture and build effective working relationships within it.

That’s where Executive Onboarding — one of IntoGreat’s core services — comes in.

We’re not just talking short-term orientation programs, which provide basic information to new hires throughout the organization. OnBoarding is designed to help senior executives assimilate to their new surroundings by quickly adopting the language, actions and work culture that help them win confidence and trust. OnBoarding also helps organizations protect their investments. Studies show they stand a better chance of retaining top talent and of reaping the rewards that come from C-level officers who have been appropriately and thoroughly positioned to deliver desired results.

IntoGreat custom develops and facilitates OnBoarding programs for chief executive officers and their direct reports — so contact us to discuss how we might be of service. A good OnBoarding program:

  • runs anywhere from 18 months to three years;
  • provides C-level executives a mentor or coach who helps them become full contributors in the organization faster and with fewer problems;
  • helps executives develop successful working relationships through internal and external networking opportunities;
  • strongly encourages executives to immerse themselves in the work environment and culture before introducing big changes and new business strategies.