The problem with Succession Planning is often viewed as a “have to” than a “want to” situation.
Having conversations with team members about where they stand and why, through the lens of a consistent model, is critical to setting the stage for change. Leaders cannot succeed one another if they are not developed and ready for that next role. Also, the organization cannot be prepared for change if there is no way to understand and speak in terms of the readiness of each leader and what each person is prepared to do.
When organizations treat succession as a box to be checked, it is clear the focus is on the process and not the outcome. And what’s even more absent is the intent. Like performance reviews, many leaders tend to see this as a compliance effort, rather than a commitment to developing people. If done correctly, succession plans should be the result of an ongoing development effort that focuses on the growth and readiness of people.
By shifting the thinking from “succession planning,” which implies an event, to “succession readiness,” which invites leaders to think in terms of ongoing development.
What are the benefits of a Succession Planning Retreat?
- Develop a successor so leadership can evolve or move on.
- Create an ability to shift and deal with change, both internal and external.
- Leadership makes an intentional effort to develop the readiness of people.
- Effectively separate current performance from future potential.