The most effective new campus leaders hit the ground running by truly understanding their inherited culture. By doing an initial baseline survey, leaders are much better prepared to set meaningful goals, prioritize scarce resources, influence outcomes and measure progress over time.
As a function of the work and research that ModernThink conducts, we can be particularly helpful with presidential transitions by supporting incoming leadership with some form of organizational assessment or environmental scan. It can be a very intentional component of a new leader’s first ninety days and a proactive means to fast-track the learning curve in a new environment.
“My presidency began during the pandemic when employees were still working remotely. The ModernThink survey results were one of the primary artifacts I used to gain insight into the culture of the college and to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the colleges’ greatest strengths and opportunities.”
– Dr. Towuanna Porter Brannon, President, Virginia Peninsula Community College
By having a third-party provider assist in the listening tour and/or survey process, you can ensure the confidentiality and anonymity of all responses. We can support the analysis of the survey data so you have clear recommendations that will fast-track your understanding of the current climate and facilitate your ability to make your new university a better place to work and learn.
We realize that the last thing you want to worry about in your transition is how your survey will be administered. ModernThink will handle the heavy lifting for a new leader and will work directly with staff on either end of your transition team to ensure a smooth survey project. It is our belief that this survey should be organized and conducted by the President’s Office. Other departments (e.g., institutional research, human resources) can help operationalize this process but it must be seen as a top priority for you as president. We will help in advising you on an approach to set you and the process up for success. ModernThink is an important partner in this process in that we can ensure the anonymity of the respondents for you to receive clear, honest and straightforward information to support a successful transition.
“One of the most important elements in a presidential transition is organizational culture. Culture drives daily behavior, organizational thinking and decision making. A new president must understand the elements of the campus culture, both to leverage it and, when necessary, seek to change it.”
Presidential Transitions: It’s Not Just the Position, It’s the Transition by Sanaghan, Goldstein and Gaval