Chapter 1


Planning ought to be the fundamental first act of any leader. ‘What is your plan?’ is the question that nags at new chief executives, project managers or divisional heads.

It is why many chief executives start by conducting a strategy review. Take stock, ask questions of your team, and of your team’s team, look again at the plans of your predecessor. These seem sensible ways to approach a new role. After all, if you are replacing someone who has not lived up to expectations – or even someone who has – the old strategy may need refreshing.

The problem is that the ground shifts under a new CEO’s feet even as she maps out her first weeks in charge. The days are long gone when an executive team could prepare a five-year plan, ...

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