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3 Common New Leadership Pitfalls

A commonly cited management statistic shows that about 60% of new managers fail within the first year of their promotion.

This is a very high failure rate considering the amount of time and effort that has been invested by the organization into identifying and grooming the talent. So what is the problem if this is the norm?

Consider the situation: the organization identifies 3 HIPO talents in their organization to as part of their responsible succession management plan. HR and the senior managers spend time to identify the 3 “chosen ones” and HR promptly proceed to kick-start the talent development program for the 3 golden child. Hence, when the subsequent new talent fails, the loss is not simply the loss of ONE talent, it is the loss of 3 HIPO employees!

Whilst there can be many reasons why a new manager may fail, here are 3 of the most common mistakes that usually contribute to their failures.

Mistake #1.

Failure to follow-up with Talent Development program.

As obvious as this may seem, there are plenty of organizations’ and their leaders who simply assume that the identification of the HIPO and talents are the be-all and end-all. With no proper and clear follow-up structure to highlight and develop the competency gaps for the fledgling leaders, this is a recipe for disaster and failure.

Mistake #2.

Failure to provide Leadership and People-Management Leadership Training.

Too often, the new leadership and HIPO selection are based purely on their technical and professional expertise with little consideration for their human agility competencies. Yes, they make great engineers, but once they take on the leadership mantle, they can easily become monsters at the helm.

Mistake #3.

Failure to induct into leadership Team.

This is one of the areas that is commonly mistaken as a given. The assumption that just because the leadership team is made of up “leaders” there is no need to properly induct and orientate the new leader into the existing leadership team. This can result in unnecessary stress on the new leader and can even exacerbate the politicking that is on-going.


Are you and your leadership team guilty of any of the above?