Dr. Amel Karboul

CEO Transition Coaching

Situation: Daniel K. is new CEO of a mid size company in the US. The former CEO has been there for over 20 years and has run the business very successfully. The US Business is 100% owned by an Austrian company and is part of a global network. Daniel has been chosen for mainly two reasons: 1) he should rejuvenate the business, bring in fresh ideas and 2) bring in a global mindset and increase communication and cooperation of the US business with the “mother” company!

Daniel’s Challenge: he knows about his strengths and areas of development and seeks for feedback from his board and direct reports regularly, BUT he was not really aware that people were not judging him on what or how he was doing things but on how he was doing it compared to the old CEO! The key word here is compared! There were some feedbacks and reactions he could not understand or interpret.

Approach: He did a stakeholder analysis (download) and went then asking for expectations from his important stakeholder on:

  1. What should stay the same?
  2. What should be different than before (more of, less of)?
  3. What should come on top, new things which were not taken into account so far?

Reflection: it is not about Daniel actually doing everything other people expect from him, but

  • about knowing their expectations – since people judge us on how much we do fulfil or not their expectations – and
  • about understanding their reactions – why they were allergic to some proposals – and
  • he also could then have a concrete picture about what the board was talking about when they gave him feedback on his personal achievements – he had the so called base line, he could build on – and
  • he could see where conflicts of interest popped up and engage in dialogue to solve them

common sense but not common practice