A 30-60-90 day plan can help you prove to a new employer that you know your role within a new company. It demonstrates that you understand the position’s responsibilities and are prepared to tackle them, starting on day one.
A successful plan also helps you to better adapt to your new role and work environment.
- What is a 30-60-90 day plan?
- When to use a 30-60-90 day plan?
- Benefits of a 30-60-90 day plan
- 30-60-90 day plan template with example
- 30-60-90 day plan example
- Tips for creating your own 30-60-90 day plan
- 30-60-90 day plan tips for executives and managers
What is a 30-60-90 day plan?
A 30-60-90 day plan is a formalized document containing intents, goals, and actions that a new employee plans to execute to maximize his efficiency in a new role.
A 30-60-90 day plan can be used in any position or company.
For a regular employee, a 30-60-90 day plan is a way to show the interviewer that you know what to do and have a plan for this new role. It is a type of preparation that a prospective employee might opt to create before their interview, or it might be something an interviewer requests applicants to create.
For executive positions, the purpose of the plan is the same, the only difference is the scale of the plan, or the department level that it would apply to. A prospective manager would prepare the plan to show what they will do to succeed in the role.
The plan should demonstrate that new employees are able to set goals that are in line with the company vision.
When to use a 30-60-90 day plan?
This plan is ideal for those who are seeking to make a strong positive impression during an interview.
It demonstrates what you will bring to the job, highlights your seriousness about the position, and shows that your goals dovetail with those of the company.
No matter the level of the role, a strong 30-60-90 day plan can be an asset during the interview process.
Regular level employees can show the value that they will bring to the team, and higher level employees can demonstrate how their leadership will create positive effects within their team or department.
Many hiring managers want to see that their new hires are serious about their jobs and career. This plan gives insight into how a new hire plans to fulfill the goals of their new role, their understanding of various processes and how they tackle challenges.
While it is most commonly used for those who are beginning new positions, it can also be used to work on a new project. The same template can be helpful to set actionable goals and achieve them in regards to a new project that you are working on.
Benefits of a 30-60-90 day plan
A 30-60-90 day plan is a helpful tool for both the candidate and the organization.
When a candidate writes a good plan, they demonstrate competency, while potentially impressing hiring managers.
The organization can then use the plan to judge the potential candidate for suitability within the role, department or team.
Here are a few of the benefits of creating one:
1. Increased chances of being hired
Because you will be doing your homework before the interview, it proves that you are a committed team player.
This often impresses your interviewer and can give you a larger chance of being hired.
2. Positive impression on the interviewer
If you are a new employee or a potential hire, a 30-60-90 day plan can show to your employer that you know what you are doing. It demonstrates that you have a plan in place.
Prepare it prior to your interview even if your interviewer doesn’t request one.
3. Smooth onboarding
Starting a new job can be rough sometimes. A 30-60-90 day plan helps you to better integrate yourself into a new team and makes a smoother transition for you.
In creating this plan, you will have to research the role, the tasks you will be assigned, and set out plans for completing them.
In doing so, you’ll be formulating solutions, considering the best plan of attack, and gaining a deeper understanding of the job. This will help set you up for success from day one.
4. Increased productivity
Because you will have a clear goal to work toward in your first 90 days, you have better focus and increased productivity.
Each day, you should know exactly how your tasks fit into the bigger picture of your 30-60-90 day plan.
30-60-90 day plan template with example
There are four key areas that should be included in your 30-60-90 day plan:
- Personal goals
- Actions and metrics
In each phase of your plan, you should have something that you are focused on learning.
This might mean meeting with your team to understand their pain points. It might mean learning the ins and outs of your company’s product to make better sales pitches.
Particularly in the first 30 day phase, you should be doing a great deal of learning.
This is part of your plan that should start to take shape. In what areas can you improve performance (either your own or the company’s)?
This should help you to better align your personal responsibilities with the mission of the team you work with.
Start to narrow down what the priority is so that you can better set personal goals in the next section.
This is the best place to mark down exactly what you want to accomplish.
Make sure that you have some insight into your goals and why they are essential to achieve.
This helps to keep your focus clear and doesn’t allow you to lose sight of the company’s mission.
Action and metrics
This is the stage where you determine how you will measure your progress toward your goals.
How will you know when you have achieved a goal? It is important to have specific qualifying action steps behind each one of your goals so that you do not lose momentum.
- If you want to improve your sales pitch, then you might sit in on a sales call with a seasoned salesperson three times this week.
- If you want to reduce the budget, you might have a goal to spend 10 percent less on office supplies.
Whatever your goal is, you need to have an action step associated with it to help you measure your progress.
30-60-90 day plan example
During the first thirty days in your new position, you spend as much time as possible learning about your company processes, your team, product or the services you sell. This might involve things like:
- Interviewing team members to assess their strengths
- Joining staff on sales calls to learn more about the product or service
- Interviewing customers to learn more about their needs
- Spending time with customer service to determine where your product or services fall short
- Pinpointing current goals and seeing if progress is being made
- Reviewing the budget
Once you have a firm grasp on who you are working with and how you are expected to perform, it is time to implement new aspects of your role.
For regular employees, the focus should be stepping more fully into your role. You have taken the time to learn what that role is, now you should be beginning to deliver results and reaching good working performance.
For higher level employees, like executives or managers, you will start setting new goals for your team. Create goals based on the information you learned during the first thirty days. This is the time for you to share your new goals with the team and start to hold them accountable for the changes.
Regardless of the level of your role, this is a time for you to set goals along with actionable steps you can take to achieve them.
All goals should be specific and measurable. You should also be able to achieve them within a specific timeframe.
TIP: Set a clear metric so you will know when you have achieved each goal.
For example, if your goal is to improve your sales pitch, you might have a metric of observing a more seasoned sales professional in a number of phone calls. You might also have them listen in on a few of your sales calls to offer constructive feedback.
As you move into the first ninety days of your position, you should be ensuring that your performance is in line with company goals and the goals for your specific role.
You should have a solid foundation of knowledge regarding your job, the ability to complete your tasks properly, and an understanding of how your performance helps the organization.
For employees, this is a prime moment to look towards leadership opportunities. Ask yourself ‘what path do I want to take with this organization?’ and begin to set yourself up for that journey. Take initiative and reach out to stakeholders who may be able to help you.
For management level employees, this is when you can start to make bigger changes. Look at the overall picture of your company or department and determine where changes can be made. Ensure that each team member is where they are supposed to be, review the budget, and replace ineffective processes with new ones.
Much like your goals set for the first sixty days, all goals here should still be measurable, time-bound, and specific. While this is bigger picture thinking, each goal should still be realistic and attainable.
Tips for creating your own 30-60-90 day plan
While some hiring professionals will come directly out and ask you for a 30-60-90 day plan, many will not.
It is still an excellent idea to create one to show just how you will stand out in the workplace.
As you begin to write this plan, you should ask yourself: What changes would you make and how would you go about your new role in the first ninety days? This will help you create a solid plan that will impress hiring managers.
1. Identify the company’s mission
You can’t create a plan until you have a clear idea of what the company is looking for.
You should spend a great deal of time researching its mission, core values, and any information you can find on its current processes or products.
Each plan should be catered specifically to the culture of the company you are applying to work for.
2. Thoroughly understand the job description
You should tailor your plan to the position that you are applying for instead of overreaching your bounds.
You might have many ideas for the company as a whole, but pay careful attention to the job description.
- What is the role?
- What would your responsibilities be?
- What expectations does the company have?
- Is there a probation period?
3. Explain your plan thoroughly
When you head into an interview, you must prepare a copy of your 30-60-90 day plan.
It can be in the form of a PowerPoint presentation, slides, or paper.
However, you should do more than just slide it across the desk and hope that they understand it. Present it to the interviewer in detail.
4. Don’t be ashamed to brag
Present your plan in great detail.
When you discuss the goals you want to set, it is important to relate these goals to accomplishments you have had in the past.
What have you done that was similar at another company? Focus on your future at this new company but don’t forget about all of the amazing things you have done in the past!
5. Identify your priorities
Setting goals can be challenging if you aren’t aware of your priorities.
Why were you hired for this exact position? Maybe your goal is to solve a specific problem within the team, or perhaps you just need to be the best you can be with your current responsibilities.
Take a few moments to think about the bigger picture of what your job should look like, and then move forward from there.
6. Set measurable goals
All goals that make it onto your list should have a means for you to measure the outcome.
Make sure that you identify how you will measure success on each of the goals that you set.
Try to list quantitative data to support your goals, such as revenue increases, increased website views, and positive customer reviews.
7. Remember to course-correct
Sometimes, starting a new position or project can be overwhelming.
You might set up your plan with the best intentions, but things can change.
If a piece of your plan no longer seems relevant or helpful, it’s okay to have the flexibility to course-correct. Change up your goals if you need to.
8. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
You’ll never get to know your team members or your products unless you are willing to ask good questions.
Spend time with your interviewer or the company representative if they are eager to communicate with you.
Ask any questions you may have about your role and what is expected of you so that you can form clear goals for your plan.
30-60-90 day plan tips for executives and managers
If you are an executive or a manager who has direct reports, your version of a 30-60-90 day plan might look a bit different than a junior employee’s plan.
Here are a few tips to help you get started with your own plan.
1. Take time to learn about direct reports
During your first thirty days, you should be setting aside a large portion of your time to interview your direct reports.
Find out information about them as a person, such as their dreams and goals for their position.
- What are the pain points of their job?
- What barriers are there that stop them from achieving their goals?
- How would they solve those problems?
You should know what their strengths and weaknesses are so that you can see areas where they can improve.
In meeting with each person individually and attentively listening to them, you create a good impression, gain a deep, functional knowledge of your new department, and often will get insight on how to solve these problems.
All of this information can help you to see the current reality of the work environment.
As a new manager or executive, you might be able to help influence change in a way that would boost team morale and productivity.
2. Inform yourself
Consider this step as an extension of the previous one.
Not only should you gather all of the information possible from your recruits, you should spend a lot of time in your first 30 days reading reports, reviewing documentation, talking to other managers, and meeting with higher level executives.
This is the time to ask as many questions as you can, making notes on where you see issues or potential solutions.
3. Create an atmosphere of trust and alignment
During the first 30 days, work to gain the trust of those who will be working under you.
In many organizations, a new manager can represent a threat to how things work, and employees might be resistant to big changes.
You can build this atmosphere by making an effort to get to know them and listening to their thoughts, issues and solutions.
Never diminish the thoughts or opinions of your reports. If you think that they may be wrong, simply ask more questions to better understand their unique point of view. It could be that they are seeing a problem that you don’t.
By working hard at this, you can set yourself up to have a team that trusts that you will be working with their best interests in mind, as well as the organization’s.
4. Identify your strongest employees
By the end of the first 30 days, you should be able to pinpoint who your strongest employees are.
These people will form your A-team, and will be of great service to you.
These are the employees that you will want to include in important projects, as you can depend on them to drive other employees towards reaching their goals.
By having at least a few good employees who you can depend on, you can concentrate more easily on higher level issues, comfortable in the knowledge that your team will be fine without micromanagement.
Through this process, you should also be able to see where skills gaps are in your team, and begin identifying ways to close those gaps.
Plan out ways to invest in your team and grow their strengths.
5. Set SMART goals
Once you enter the second thirty days, it’s time to get some goals down on paper.
You have spent 30 days learning the lay of the land - now you should be in a position to identify issues and solutions.
Upon hiring, you will have been given a solid idea of what the organization expects of you.
After 30 days, you will be able to create actionable goals, begin implementing changes, and really stepping into your role.
6. Review processes
During the second thirty days, you should also be paying close attention to how the processes within your department work.
Often, a fresh set of eyes can see problems - and solutions - to processes that didn’t scale well, are no longer optimized, or otherwise simply don’t work as well as they could.
It is easy to get bogged down with ‘we’ve always done it this way’ and not see how change can be a positive.
As you learn how things are done, and why, you will likely be able to identify better ways of getting things done.
7. Implement changes to meet company goals
You should take everything you learned in the first 60 days, and implement changes in the final 30 days.
- Reduce bottlenecks,
- Implement new processes,
- Introduce new staff or training methods,
- Bring new ideas to achieve better performance.
From the executive level to the day-to-day management of your team or department, you should be leaning in, contributing what you can, asking questions, and generally participating to the best of your ability.
8. Identify your staffing needs
As you enter into your final 30 days, you should have a solid handle on how things are run in your department, and how capable your staff is.
Now is the time to take a close look at your staffing needs and see if they are being met.
- Are there bottlenecks in one department, holding things up for everyone else?
- Are there certain employees that need to take time for training before they can perform up to expectations?
- Could things be made smoother with new hires to help ease the workload?
Look at the short, middle, and long-term goals you have set. Create a hiring plan with those in mind.
9. Conduct regular meetings
Throughout this process, you should be checking in with your team on a regular basis.
You should have weekly meetings with your team to track progress and see how things are progressing on the goals set for the sixty- and ninety-day portions of your plan.
Depending on your work environment, these may be one-on-one meetings or a weekly team gathering.
Figure out what works best for your business, and then make these meetings a mandatory part of the company culture.
Try a 30-60-90 day plan template from Altassian in Trello.