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  • Writer's pictureMike Bensi

Help Others Thrive - Versus Survive - a Transition

Updated: Mar 17, 2021

Have you ever counted the number of transitions you've made in your career? I'd guess new jobs or promotions come to mind first. But what about other transitions you had to make - when you've needed to report to a new manager, experienced a department reorganization, or a company merger?

When I recently asked a leadership team to share examples of their own transitions, there weren't a lot of "meh" transitions - it was one extreme or the other.

For those that found their experiences as great were those who looked at what the transition offered. One leader shared how immediately upon joining a new team during an acquisition, she reached out to her new colleagues and manager right away to learn about them and their roles. While someone else, who said he had a negative experience, blamed a lack of communication and how he felt in the dark during his transition.

While we would love everyone to show a sense of abundance, transitions are still change. And change can be met with fear. Even though we may have our own experiences, or want others to "look on the bright side", we can sometimes miss the opportunity as a leader to support others in their own experience.

Helping someone minimize their own fear and uncertainty - or the need to survive - can best be met by maximizing the amount of ownership and freedom - the opportunity to thrive - for the employee. And that can include simple acts such as:

  • Being welcoming to a new colleague through scheduling a 1:1 conversation

  • Allowing the employee to contribute to the change

  • Creating a sense of ownership in the transition, such as owning a project or a new initiative

  • Giving freedom to try a new process or system that they have shown success with in the past

  • Being open to input and feedback - especially constructive feedback and ideas

Leaving employees to survive on their own can lead to employees being less open to new ideas, more anxious, etc. Allowing employees to thrive, however, will allow them to integrate quicker and more effectively while building a more resilient mindset moving forward.

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