Becoming CEO in our industry can be an anxious time for a new leader, as well as the staff that he or she is set to lead. No matter how much industry experience a person brings to the table, settling into a new leadership role requires learning a different set of procedures, stepping into a unique work environment, and establishing trust with a new board, staff and account holders.

If there is no well-thought-out process in place to guide the new leader through the first few months of the job, he or she can waste valuable time learning the basics – like how to work the phone system or where the break room is located – which can be frustrating and counterproductive. By establishing and maintaining an effective CEO onboarding process, your bank or credit union can create a welcome, productive environment from day one and keep momentum moving forward.

According to our resident subject matter expert – Charles Shanley, executive vice president of recruitment services – while every organization has its own onboarding approach, the most important component is setting and communicating both short- and long-term goals and expectations.

According to Shanley, it is customary for the board chair to lead the onboarding process. After the new CEO has learned his or her way around the facility and met all staff members, work can begin on learning the institution’s culture, its strategic goals and day-to-day operations, as well as developing processes to ensure strong performance.

It’s also imperative for the new leader to understand the board’s expectations going forward. “If the new CEO isn’t clear on expectations and the board doesn’t provide feedback, he or she will be flying blind,” Shanley cautioned.

Learn more about how you can ensure a smooth transition of leadership and set the stage for success. Read “Excellence in CEO Onboarding” for some great insight on this topic.