IUP Publications Online
 
Home About IUP Magazines Journals Books Archives
     
Recommend    |    Subscriber Services    |    Feedback    |     Subscribe Online
 
Effective Executive Magazine:
Hanging On Versus Moving On: The Perils and Promise of Executive Transition
 
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Transitions are a classic problem. Change—which is what transitions involve—is most often disruptive whether it is from new ideas, birth or death, the development or dissolution of relationships. Our perspective here is on executive transitions, leaving (or not!) and assuming a new position successfully while leaving the old position gracefully. We call this the Hanging on/Moving on Dilemma. There are several perils to the “hanging on part—inappropriate enmeshment with the old firm”. Also, there is the executive who is deeply clueless, one who thinks promotion is on the way when it is really dismissal. And finally, there is a general lack of succession planning in the most organizations which means that every execution is sort of a “surprise”. On the moving on side, there is the stayer who has already mentally moved on, the destructive mover who trashes the new organization, the mover who fails to see the new job is different, and the good player/poor coach problem. Executive coaching and regular performance appraisals can help smooth the transitions.

   
Hanging on/moving on occurs in all phases of our existence. There is the factor of birth of course, and death… and the lingering death. Moving on from destructive habits—such as substance abuse—is classically difficult. Moving on from (or hanging on to) old ideas and perspectives about scientific truths such as the “Flat Earth Society”,1 Holocaust deniers,2 and values and relationships that some may hold dear but which need to change are common examples. And of course, any executive transition involves a change in jobs—moving from one job to another … leaving the old job and its perks and comforts, and moving on to a new one with many unknowns.
 
 
Effective Executive Journal, Hanging on” scenario,False Promiser, Succession Planning, Player/Coach Dilemma.