Guru Tips2V4

07 Aug, 2012

Guru Guidance Tips: Weathering a Leadership Transition

Guru Guidance   News You Can Use  
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Read time: 1 minute, 13 seconds

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The Scenario

The founding principal has retired at the mentee’s firm and someone new has been promoted to management. How might this situation affect the mentee, as a marketing coordinator? In what ways might it affect his direct supervisor, the marketing manager, differently? What can marketers of any experience level do to ease the transition and understand how best to adapt to a new boss’s priorities, expectations and management style?

Manage up

  • As a marketing coordinator, find out how the change is affecting your immediate supervisor. Do what you can to support your supervisor during the transition.
  • Take time to find out the new manager’s views on marketing and their past experience. Ask how they interacted with marketing staff, review past proposals, ask about writing & speaking capabilities, discuss past successful and unsuccessful efforts, etc.
  • Define expectations on both sides, as management and as coordinator. Marketing can be defined differently based on perspective.
  • Over-communicate while getting to know one another, particularly if new manager is in an outside office. It’s good to be able to put a face to a name. It’s also good to ensure your manager understands both what you are doing and why you are doing it.
  • Identify new manager’s strengths in supporting marketing initiatives, for example strong writing skills.
  • Develop an approach to marketing together, whether that means making changes or continuing with the current plan.

Other opportunities

  • Identify future leaders within the firm and find ways to mentor their marketing skills. Invite them to regular marketing meetings to help them understand the marketing support required of a manager. Bonus--new perspective may bring great new ideas.
Curious about the Guru Guidance Program? Get more info here. This is the final installment in this Guru Guidance Tips Series. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of the series.