Succession Planning: Don’t Leave Your Company Without It
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There are many things great leaders do. Not only do they lead by example when they are a part of the organization, but they also make sure that the organization and their employees succeed in their endeavors even when they are not around anymore. A major thing to consider for you when leaving a company should be succession planning. The process is vital for any company or business to grow. When leaders quit or retire, they can leave a significant void in the company. But if they put in a little thought to what happens after they leave, they can contribute to the growth of the organization. Let us understand how this works.
What is Succession Planning?
Many people are of the opinion that hiring new talent does not always work in the favor of the business, especially in leadership roles. Succession planning makes for a very important role for companies that prefer promoting in-house employees to the higher ranks.
Succession planning is nothing but spending some time and thought into deciding who takes after your role when you retire or quit. It includes training or mentoring the people in line, who are suitable to take on the responsibility previously being handled by you. The people you mentor as part of your succession plan are the ones who will ultimately bear the flag of success in the organization.
How Does Succession Planning Benefit an Organization?
Succession planning is important for all types of organizations, big or small. Here’s why:
- Ensures Continuity: Filling a role is not as easy as it may seem, especially when it comes to the higher positions in a company. Hiring a new candidate can take weeks and sometimes months. There are many things that need to be discussed in a recruitment process, for example, the job role, the remuneration, work timings, leaves, benefits, etc. Even after a successful hiring, the transition period for a new employee can take some time. On the other hand, preparing an existing employee for the role in question, consumes less time. In-house employees are already familiar with the company’s visions and missions and require less guidance and time to understand the demands of a particular role. They can also slowly take up the responsibility of the role even before the position is vacant. This ensures continuity and growth.
- Encourages Employees: A succession plan works as a motivating factor for the existing employees. It helps them in their career growth and shows them a direction. Succession planning ensures that the employees of an organization are happy and willing to work hard towards a better position in the company. It also reduces the attrition rate of an organization. Succession planning not only benefits the senior employees who are next in line for leadership roles but also offers young employees a way to channelize their ambitions and energy.
- Improves Performance: It is human nature to work harder when you know you will be rewarded for it. Succession planning acts as a mirror for employees and shows them where their career is headed. When employees are motivated, they perform better and ultimately benefit the organization.
- Reduces Costs: Hiring can be an expensive process. You need to first advertise for a job, hold numerous interviews, and then select the right candidate. Most companies hire employees via third-party recruiters or consultancies. The process not only takes time but also money. On the contrary, in-house promotions do not require the involvement of any third-parties. You can simply select an employee based on their past work and an interview.
How Does Succession Planning Work?
Succession planning is an important duty of a leader. Here’s how you can start:
- Identify the Important Roles: Not all positions in the company qualify for succession planning. It is usually the top tier of leadership that is of utmost importance to an organization. Identify these roles. It could be the CEO, the board of directors, the heads of each department, etc.
- Understand the Qualities Needed for a Role: Every role requires a different set of qualities. Identity these qualities beforehand. These will be instrumental in picking out the right candidate.
- Select the Right Contenders: Make a list of employees for each of these roles. Do not stick to a certain employee and make sure you give every deserving candidate a chance. Keep the interest of the organization as a priority and do not make decisions based on your personal biases.
- Make a Plan: Every succession plan differs based on the role and candidate. Once you have picked out the right candidates, make a plan that is best suited for their abilities. Some people are quick to catch up on other people’s experiences. Some people thrive on their own experience and make for better leaders after having personally handled a situation. Understand the nature of your employees and accordingly allot them duties or lessons so they can quickly learn and be prepared to take on the new role.
- Evaluate their Performance: Even after an employee has taken over the role, they may still need some guidance from time to time. The transition into a new position or job is never easy. An important facet of succession planning is to allow the employee enough time to get used to their new duties and everyday tasks. You must evaluate their progress and performance in this phase. You may take your time to be certain about an employee’s caliber.
To Sum it Up
Employees come and go, but an organization must keep running. Succession planning ensures that the business never suffers. It offers time and motivation to deserving employees so they can ultimately take the reins of an organization’s success in their hands.