To get where you’re going, start where you are


An illustration of a GPS satellite. Courtesy of NASA.

More and more of us are relying on Global Positioning Systems to find our ways around town and around the country. While many of us have horror stories of being led astray by erroneous directions, far more of our GPS-guided trips have led to our intended destinations.

But those directions, and the whole incredible system of satellite-calibrated coordinates that provide them, can’t be accurate without a crucial first step: Knowing where you are in the first place. It’s true for all kinds of journeys, whether you seek guidance in the stars or not: You can’t know where you’re going without knowing where you are.

The same is especially true for organizations and leadership transition planning.

How prepared is your organization for a change of leadership?  Evaluating your organization’s strengths and challenges when it comes to its readiness for the sudden or gradual exit of your leader is essential to figuring out your next steps forward. To know how your organization will survive, even thrive, as it experiences the disruption of a new leader, first you have to know where you are.

Our new book, When Leaders Leave: A New Perspective on Leadership Change, can serve as a diagnostic tool to help you determine how prepared your organization is for a change in leadership. It is full of insights gleaned from decades of work in the leadership-transition field, helping organizations weather the storms of expected and unexpected transitions.

We feature a pair of tools, the Change Readiness Survey and the Change Acceptance Continuum, that work together to help you understand where you and your organization are when it comes to preparing for the inevitable, if uncomfortable, transition at the top of your organization.

Whether you’re relying on GPS or just a plain old map, you first want to figure out your current location before plotting your way forward. So too with navigating toward and through the challenges of leadership transition. When Leaders Leave: A New Perspective on Leadership Change, can help you plot those coordinates.