Forbes recently ran an article about how leaders may be better off 'doing nothing' to make their mark: http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnkotter/2012/04/03/new-leaders-to-make-your-mark-do-nothing
My view below:
I can't agree with the above view on the grounds that I have dealt with the aftermath of many many senior executives who enter organisations with all the best intentions for change but then spend too long being persuaded by those established in the business that their idea wouldn’t work.
Harvard produced some figures a few years back that over 60% of external hires fail to deliver anything above par within 18 months. Given that most senior executives' tenure is now under 3 years it does seem like an awful waste of time hiring anyone permanently in the first place.
Now I am not impartial as I focus on placing Interim Managers into organisations. Surveys in the industry often show the value of delivering change within weeks, not months as demonstrated by interim managers. One could argue that in today's global market doing nothing is tantamount to commercial suicide.