How to ensure a smooth transition
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How to ensure a smooth transition

When you leave a company it’s more important than ever to leave a good impression – all the more reason to spend some quality time ensuring that your successor has a smooth transition into your old role.

You’ll change your marketing job at some time, for any one of a whole spectrum of different reasons – each of which will require you to demonstrate a differing degree of sensitivity.

Whether you’re leaving by choice or circumstance, it’s important to assist as much as possible in the change process if there’s to be a happy ending for everyone involved. Thanks to the power of LinkedIn and other online employment hubs, leaving your previous role on good terms is a must – and it’s also an important way to show your professionalism, both to your former colleagues (who may prove to be useful contacts) and a future employer.

Here are a few of the most important aspects to consider:

  1. First and foremost, you should get your current projects – such as any advertising campaigns that could be time-sensitive – up-to-date before you leave. Not only will you get the personal satisfaction of knowing you’re not walking out with a job half done, but also your replacement will be able to learn with greater ease, and won’t come in to a project at an awkward stage. It won’t be possible to finish everything, but that’s no reason to start letting go of the reins during your notice period.

  2. It’s always a good idea to put together useful information for your replacement – a quick guide to the ins and outs of the job, including any insider tips you can think of, will make life a lot easier. Regarding the marketing team, it’s best that the new person comes to their own opinions about each member of staff – but going through the objective evidence of annual reviews and shared 360-degree feedback together can help them out. Setting up one-on-one meetings so that team members and the new manager can get to know each other is another good option.

  3. Why not introduce your successor to your business contacts? It’s polite to send an email to them explaining the handover that’s taking place, and also giving them the opportunity to contact the new manager directly. If you have a new account, or a client that’s particularly important, then it might be good practice to introduce them over a dinner or coffee, so they’re equally comfortable with the transition.

Finally, remember that you have to prepare for your new role as well. It’s one thing to be able to execute a skillful handover, but you must ensure that you’re prepared mentally for your next step. Your future success will depend on your frame of mind and ability to find the right balance. Say goodbye to the old, and make it as smooth as possible, but remember that the new is just over the horizon.

Nicky Rowe Nicky Rowe Consulting HR Consultant and Executive Coach
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