It started out professional enough. Well, somewhat.
It was merely acknowledgment of the charisma, potential and talent of a leader with future potential. Whom she also thought was handsome…in a company that didn’t have a large pool of ‘pleasing to the eye’ male leaders. Every time he spoke she was inspired. I mean, who couldn’t help be inspired by his energy, passion, vision (and that smile…)?!
As time went on she continued to amass evidence on his:
- brilliant (?) leadership potential
- admire his dashing good looks
- be enamored by his observations of the market conditions
- be inspired in his presence
…all the while
You’ve been promoted at work. Hip, Hip, Hooray! And don’t forget the champagne! But do you know how to survive your promotion?
I’ve spent years assessing leaders for promotion. Over this time I have been able to follow many of these executives and see how things played out. I’ve come to the conclusion that achieving a promotion, being successful in the new role and surviving your promotion are entirely different matters. Here are a few things I have learned from observing these leaders.
First of all, what is my definition of survival? For the purpose of this article, my definition for survival
About 18 months ago I was feeling pretty good. My team at work was doing well and creating massive impact. We enjoyed the respect of both the business leaders and our peers in HR. Business schools and professional groups were seeking our input for lectures, case studies and guidance. I had more opportunities to co-author books, lecture and research than I had time for…and the headhunters kept calling. Not only were they calling me…but everyone on our team. Like sirens of the lake, each call promised the riches of fame and fortune.
It couldn’t get any better. As they say down
I could hear it in their voices as they described their work and personal lives.
I could see it on their resume in their list of education and experiences.
They had “arrived!” They had reached a pinnacle in their career … but their story didn’t have a happy ending.
Earlier in my career I was, for lack of a better term, a “hired gun.” A management consultant conducting leadership assessments for companies being sold, bought or undergoing large-scale transformation. I travelled the globe writing leadership profiles on senior executive talent across a variety of industries.
After conducting hundreds of these I began to notice