Beyond Sink or Swim: The Case for Accelerating Leadership Transitions

Michael Watkins

January 13, 2010

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"Given the magnitude of the overall organizational impact, it is surprising how few companies invest in helping their precious leadership assets to succeed during transitions—the most critical junctures in their careers. A few companies (GE, for example) explicitly train their managers how to take charge. More common are "on-boarding" programs that introduce outside hires to the strategy, businesses, and culture of the company. While useful, such programs seldom provide systematic guidance on the process of managing a successful transition. And the vast majority of companies do not provide any support at all. Why do so many companies leave their people to sink or swim?"

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