Models & Tools : Mastering Your First 90 Days with a 30-60-90 Day Plan 🚀

Starting a new role, especially at the C-suite level, can be both exhilarating and daunting. The initial days are crucial for setting the tone and laying the groundwork for long-term success. Whether you are stepping into a new company or onboarding a new executive, having a structured plan can significantly enhance the transition and integration process.

Enter the 30-60-90 Day Plan—a powerful tool to help you hit the ground running.

In this article, we’ll delve into what a 30-60-90 Day Plan is, why it’s indispensable, and how you can create an effective one.

What is a 30-60-90 Day Plan? 📅

A 30-60-90 Day Plan is a structured outline that spans your first 90 days in a new role, divided into three 30-day phases.

Each phase builds upon the previous one, providing a clear roadmap for achieving specific goals and delivering tangible results.

30 Days: The first month is about acclimating to your new environment. Key goals include building relationships, understanding the organization’s goals and strategies, and identifying early wins.

60 Days: The second month focuses on deeper integration. Goals include gaining a comprehensive understanding of systems and processes, identifying challenges and potential solutions, and establishing your credibility.

90 Days: By the third month, you should be fully functioning in your role. Goals involve finalizing key objectives, delivering initial results, and setting long-term goals for continued success and professional development.

Why Do You Need a 30-60-90 Day Plan? 🧐

A well-crafted 30-60-90 Day Plan serves multiple purposes:

  • Showcase Preparedness: Demonstrates your commitment and readiness to take on your new role.
  • Align Objectives: Ensures your goals align with the company’s objectives, fostering a unified direction.
  • Maintain Focus: Keeps you focused on key priorities, avoiding distractions from less critical tasks.
  • Smooth Transition: Eases the transition into your new role, providing clear milestones and benchmarks.
  • Prove Potential: Highlights your ability to contribute meaningfully and lead effectively from the start.

Creating a Winning 30-60-90 Day Plan 🏆

1. Set Clear Goals and Objectives 🎯

Utilize the SMART framework (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) to define your goals. Here’s how:

  • Specific: Define clear, specific goals. For example, “Increase sales leads by 10% within the next 30 days” rather than a vague “boost sales.”
  • Measurable: Establish criteria to measure progress, such as tracking customer satisfaction ratings.
  • Achievable: Set realistic goals that can be attained with available resources and capabilities.
  • Relevant: Ensure goals align with broader organizational objectives and your role’s responsibilities.
  • Time-bound: Set deadlines to create a sense of urgency and prioritize tasks effectively.

2. Develop Action Items and an Action Plan 📝

Break down goals into actionable steps. For instance, to increase sales leads, your action items might include identifying potential clients, setting up meetings, and developing tailored pitches.

3. Define Deliverables and Measures of Success 📊

Identify tangible outcomes and key performance indicators (KPIs) to evaluate success. For example, if your goal is to enhance productivity, a deliverable might be a streamlined workflow process, measured by a 20% reduction in project turnaround time.

4. Incorporate Additional Elements 🧩

Consider additional factors such as:

  • Resources: Determine what resources (budget, software, personnel) you need to achieve your goals.
  • Stakeholders: Engage key stakeholders early on to gather feedback, foster collaboration, and build a support network.

Customizing the 30-60-90 Day Plan for C-Level Executives 🏢

For C-level executives, the 30-60-90 Day Plan requires a broader and more strategic perspective. Here are some tailored elements to consider:

1. Quick Wins and Early Achievements 💪

Objective: Establish credibility and build momentum through early successes.


  • Identify immediate operational improvements, such as streamlining a key process or resolving a known bottleneck.
  • Implement a quick-win project that demonstrates your ability to deliver results, like enhancing a customer-facing process.

Example: As a new CEO, quickly revamp the customer service process to reduce response times, leveraging your fresh perspective to introduce efficient practices.

2. Strategic Observations 🔍

Objective: Understand the organization’s structure, culture, and processes.


  • Conduct one-on-one meetings with key stakeholders, including VPs, top management, and critical team members.
  • Attend departmental meetings to observe dynamics and gather insights.

Example: As a new CFO, spend the first month meeting with the finance team, other department heads, and external auditors to gain a comprehensive understanding of financial processes and areas needing improvement.

3. Building a Strong First Impression 🌟

Objective: Set the tone for your leadership style and build trust.


  • Prepare and deliver a compelling vision statement during an all-hands meeting.
  • Demonstrate active listening by incorporating feedback from initial meetings into your early actions.

Example: As a new COO, deliver a clear vision for operational excellence in your first all-hands meeting, followed by immediate, visible changes based on feedback from frontline managers.

4. Talent Pool Strengthening 🌱

Objective: Identify and develop high-potential employees to build a strong management team.


  • Review current leadership capabilities and identify gaps.
  • Develop a mentorship and training program for emerging leaders.

Example: As a new CMO, identify top performers within the marketing team and provide them with leadership training, while also bringing in external experts to offer new perspectives.

5. Long-term Strategic Planning 📈

Objective: Establish and communicate a strategic vision for the company.


  • Define long-term goals and key initiatives that align with the company’s mission and vision.
  • Develop a strategic plan that includes clear milestones and KPIs.

Example: As a new CTO, outline a technology roadmap that focuses on innovation, scalability, and security, aligning with the company’s long-term growth strategy.

Let this plan be your GPS as you navigate the exciting journey ahead 🎉

A 30-60-90 Day Plan is more than just a strategy document; it’s your roadmap to success in your new role. By setting clear goals, defining actionable steps, and measuring progress, you can ensure a smooth transition and make a lasting impact from day one. Stay flexible, seek feedback, and continuously refine your plan to adapt to new challenges and opportunities.

Some other resources to consider:

For more insights and tools on effective leadership and executive coaching, explore the blog. Contact me for personalized coaching sessions tailored to your leadership journey! 🌟

Picture from Anders Kristensen

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