At some point in the next 10 years, Great Britain will have a King. Whether the successor to Queen Elizabeth II will be the heir apparent, Prince Charles or her grandson, Prince William, remains to be seen. What isn’t likely is that the role will be filled from outside the line of succession. In businesses today, we have the opportunity to avoid this “crown prince phenomenon” and utilize succession planning as a viable alternative to increase the pool of talent and give broader choice.
With baby boomer retirements on the rise and a growing demand for senior management expertise, there is no large emerging group of potential employees on the horizon as in past generations. Many organizations have eliminated middle manager positions and no longer have this group as a source to fill senior level vacancies. With this dilemma, imagine if a key employee resigned, fell ill, had to be fired tomorrow or (fingers crossed) wins the lottery? Would you be prepared? What opportunity costs would be lost because it took a long time to replace them? Succession planning is not an issue that many organizations address in any systematic or strategic way.
Traditional succession planning has focused on a selection of ‘replacements’, was a secret process that was reactive and focused on the CEO or senior levels only. Frankly, it was simply a form of risk management to ensure the longevity of the business. Today’s integrative approach is focused on the creation of a leadership pipeline. It’s proactive and expands into mid- and lower-level management. When done successfully it can support the fulfillment of your strategic plan and will increase organizational capacity.
Additionally, strong leadership is a key contributor to job satisfaction, commitment and an employee’s intent to stay; especially true for top talent. Sadly, few companies rate their succession management plans as excellent; most rate them as fair or worse. Another distressing statistic is that 66% of senior managers hired from the outside usually fail within the first 18 months, however, companies with a succession plan that results in an internal hire are less likely to experience negative effects on employee morale.
- Identify your organization’s competency gaps
- Help achieve your organization’s strategic plan
- Message to employees that they are valuable
- Increase or secure retention of key talent
- Manage the corporate risk by ensuring a supply of talent to fulfill future business roles
- Reduce recruitment costs
- Realize the potential of individuals
- Increase organizational capability
Take your organization to the next level! Click here to begin the conversation and find out how you can realize the benefits of a strong succession planning process and provide increased bench strength to your company.