New HR Role 90-Day Plan

Hello all!

I just started a new HR Director role and I am looking to create a solid 90-day plan for myself. I'm looking for ideas or best practices to really level up and build a strong foundation in my new role. I know some will be organization specific but I'd love to hear any of your ideas.

Thanks - Chadwick

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    • Jim Diebold
    • Providing Clarity through Collaboration
    • Jim_Diebold
    • 4 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    Chadwick, congratulations on your new role! I am sure you are excited. Is there something specific you are looking to build on or create? Is this a new company for you? From participating in the HR Roundtable discussions, my perception is the need to be seen as someone who is empathetic to the team members and their needs. Walk the halls and be visible. Ask questions about what they like. Ask them if they could change anything, what would it be? Part of the 90-day plan could be scheduling meetings with all the leaders and some not leaders to compare viewpoints. I assume there is a host of things regarding company policy and other items that others here will be more qualified to answer.   Is this the type of foundation building you are looking for or is there something else I may be able to offer up?

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    • Jeff Nally
    • HR Speaker, Leadership Coach, Brain-Science Junkie
    • Jeff_Nally
    • 4 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    Hey Chadwick - In addition to Jim's great guidance below, I've found it useful to ask yourself these questions to ensure your first 90 days in role are a success: 

    • Whom do I need to influence to be successful/contribute value in this role? Meet with them to listen, learn, and create/deepen your relationship
    • By whom do I need to be influenced to be successful/contribute value in this role? Meet with them to listen, learn, and create/deepen your relationship
    • Which of the company's strategic initiatives / goals need to be top priority for me in the next 90 days? Connect with others who are engaged in those initiatives / goals and be part of the solution
    • What are the resources I have control or influence over in this role? Budget? Assets? Processes? More?  Get up to speed on learning about those resources - fast. Make sure they are aligned with those strategic initiatives and goals. 
    • Be human. Walk around (or 30 minute zoom meetings) and get to know people - even if you've been promoted at the same organization. You need to see and experience people through the lens of your new role, and they need to see and experience you in your new role. 

    I was so grateful for HR pros who helped me when I was hired as a new HR Director. I'm happy to set up a zoom call to help in any way I can.  Here's the link (below) to schedule some time. Create a great day, and CONGRATULATIONS on your new role! - Jeff

  • Congrats on the new role.  Jim and Jeff gave solid advice and mine might be duplicative in some areas.  My advice would be focusing the following:

    HR Basics: Review the handbook in depth as well as benefits offerings, and any procedures fitting into your domain (it wasn't clear if you are business partner/generalist or recruiting director, or dept. of one, etc...).  While you may have ideas to strengthen them, I've typically cataloged those ideas until I got the lay of the land in other areas and not taken too abrupt action.

    HR Team: Put time on the calendar with all HR COEs to understand how HR operates as a cohesive unit in its current state at that organization.  Same as above take notes but don't immediately plan to blow it all up until you get a lay of the land.

    Employees: As others have said, walk around or do zoom meetings or whatever you can in this environment to introduce yourself to as many employees in the population as possible.  Listen and take notes.  Pay attention to engagement and cultural cues so that you can get a read on employee attitudes and what's working and what's not.

    Stakeholders: Start a habit of connecting with leaders in your group and put significant time on their calendar to understand what initiatives and expectations your leaders both in HR and in the business expect action on from you within the short, mid, and long terms.  Try to understand the politics of the organization. 

    Industry and Business Knowledge: Is this a new industry for you?  If so figure out what publications and trade groups you can sign up for email blasts from or where you can gain industry knowledge about how things work in the industry.  Figure out who the right people are in the organization that have significant knowledge and aren't too busy to explain why the business does what it does and "how things work around here."  Ask a manager to identify some good resources for you to learn the business both internal and external/reading.

    • Zoe Lewis
    • Zoe_Lewis
    • 4 yrs ago
    • Reported - view

    In my experience of coaching leaders. There is often a risk of trying to do too much & not therefore having time to do it all.

    So, with that in mind. I will share what I’ve seen work for others.

    *People first; always*

    First 30 days - Building relationships  & Observing Reality.

    Spend time with your team individually & truly get to know them. Show trust right from the start. Create a psychologically safe environment. Share about yourself & begin authentic long term relationships.

    Bring them together as a team, observe dynamics.

    Ask about their purpose from their individual & collective perspectives.

    Listen to their views & ideas about what works & what doesn’t.

    Build & develop your relationships with line manager, peers & stakeholders. Ask them to share industry/sector knowledge if needed. 

    Ask your stakeholders (not in HR) for views on the HR team; strengths & challenges (be careful not to over promise at this stage - fact finding only)

    Next 30 days

    Needs analysis based on what you have discovered.

    Compare discoveries with other data (KPIs, etc) do they match? If not, where do they differ & investigate.

    Pull the information together & share it with the team.

    Link it to purpose & your overall objectives. 

    Guide the team to identify what works (if it ain’t broke don’t fix it) & what would be even better if...(& empower them to solutionise)

    Communicate to stakeholders & introduce them to leaders within your team to facilitate on-going relationships. 

    Last 30 days

    Observe & praise progress towards objectives. Determine your required leadership style (Google Situational Leadership) for each person.

    Ask for feedback from direct reports (if you’ve created a psychologically safe & trust based leadership style you are more likely to gain honest feedback).

    Communicate, communicate, communicate. 

    Enjoy the journey. Give yourself time to reflect as you go. 

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