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New leader assimilation


I am 6 weeks into a new role and it is clear that I need to do some development work with my new team (2 HR managers, 2 trainers, HR Co-ordinator). We need to get clarity around individual roles but also I need to understand what style of leadership they need in the short term to get them performing to the best of their ability and to inject some energy into the team. I haven't done this before so I'd be really grateful for some advice and practical guidance/L&D tools I could use to design a great assimilation session. Many thanks Sarah

5 Responses

  1. New leader assimilation
    I have come across this many times and would be happy to discuss approaches with you. I was at a recent CIPD conference where the speakers identified the need to gain sustainable performance is to improve engagement, gain new insights, improve efficiency and innovation, underpinned by a new quality of dialogue with employees, suppliers and customers. We have been actively working in these areas for a number of years and our group brings a 55 year heritage in continuous research and practise in releasing the creative potential of people for innovation, change and growth.

    Tools such as the VIEW – Problem-solving style assessment ( and SOQ assessment of workplace climate ( would be very useful and you can then design very tailored initial sessions that build and create a high performance environment and effective dialouge.


    Adrian Terry
    Achievement Advance! Ltd

  2. Some key steps to take

    Consider the following steps in order to get the team functioning quikcly and effectively.

    1. Firstly you need to get the team comfortable with you as a person. Arrange a meeting both as a whole team and then have a 1:1 meet with each and every member of the team.

    How do they feel about you as the new team leader?
    What are their expectations of you as the team leader both in terms of actions and behaviours?
    What are your expectations of them?
    How best will you work together?
    What do they enjoy about working in the team?
    What do they feel needs to change and / or work better?

    By asking these questions you will start to not only build rapport but also trust and respect provided you listen intently and attempt to understand the team’s and each individual situation.

    2. You will need to ensure that the team have absolute clarity and understanding about what the purpose of the team is and what the actual goals and specific performance objectives are. Each person also needs to have clarity around their individual roles and specific performance objectives and be reassured that support will be put in place to enable them to achieve.

    3. In terms of how you specific support each individual that will come down to their experience, their attitude and their present level of skill and performance.

    If you send me your direct e-mail address I can send you more specific information on all of the above. My e-mail is [email protected]

    Yours Aye,


    Allan Mackintosh
    Founder The Brand New Manager Academy & Creator, Team-Cards Provocateur
    0776 416 8989

  3. New Leader Assimilation

    How refreshing that you recognise the need for help as a new leader. Everyone does, but very few will acknowledge it.

    John Adair’s Action Centred Leadership (Three Circles model) is over forty years old now but, to my mind, has never been surpassed as a foundation of leadership. This identifies every leader’s three areas of responsibility: to the task, to the team and to the individual. Generally these are recognised in that order: most people understand their responsibility for organisational objectives, many are aware of their responsibility to establish effective team cohesion, few seem to appreciate their responsibility to motivate each team member individually. Without knowing which area is your current priority it is difficuly to offer you specific advice. John Adair’s seminal book on action Centred Leadership is Effective Leadership ISBN 0-330-30230-2, which was £6.99 when I bought my copy. John Adair’s approach is supported by associates of the Adair Leadership Development whose details can be found at Gordon Watt

  4. New Leader
    Management and assessments tools are all very well. But at the end of the day Sarah, the main thing you need to do is to engage with these people. And the way to do that is to spend time with them discussing all aspects of their individual and team roles and how these roles (and them as people) will fit into any plans / changes that you may have in mind.

    Your focus has to centre on your two HR Managers. If you can get them performing and managing their people effectively, then you are half way there. Tha last thing you should be doing is spoon feeding your people. Your aim should be to find ways to make your dept and the people within it as effecient and cost effective as possible. YOUR leadership skills and how you apply yourself, will be the key as to how effective you are going to be. There are many things you can do that cost nothing more than some time and effort on your part.

    Think things through carefully.

    Frank Maguire

  5. commonsense approach to leadership
    I agree with Frank. It’s risky to depend too much on questionnaires etc until the team know you and (as someone else has already said) until they’re really clear about objectives and desired outcomes. I remember another three circles model which was about “keeping things going”, “putting things right” and “doing new things”. That is about managing, I guess, but it would be a good start for you in the new role. Down to earth and realistic.
    “Where are we going and how will we get there” are the questions and answers that need to be in your mind and shared with the team.

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