Organizations carefully hire, promote and transfer individuals into roles based on a belief that someone ultimately has what it takes to succeed in the new role. But first they have to succeed in making a successful transition into that new role.
There is a concept from Michael Watkins’ well-known book, “The First 90 Days”, called the Breakeven Point. Typically, when an individual takes on a new role in an organization, there is a period of time where they are net consumers of value. Only as they learn and begin to take action, do they start to create value, and the point at which they’ve made up for the value they’ve consumed is called the “Breakeven Point” – on average 6.2 months, according to a survey of CEO’s referenced in the book.
Coaching works to accelerate the transition so that the individual can a) transition successfully, and b) transition more quickly. Both of which are critical to the organization’s bottom line. The coaching touches on whatever topics the person in the new role needs to settle in; typical discussions involve:
- Understanding what attributes from their last role will/won’t work in the new role
- Creating individualized strategies for learning the ropes
- Adapting as new things are learned about the team/culture/common practices.