Succession planning is one of the most difficult challenges associations face in this era of organizational management. Few events in the life of an association are as critical, visible, or stressful as when the leader leaves. Leadership transition is an integral process that begins long before the outgoing leader departs, and it presents a remarkable opportunity to move forward with a new understanding of the complexities, challenges, and changes the organization must address.
Adding to this complexity is the pressure coming from the growing talent mismatch. This will intensify as demand continues to grow for workers with leadership and specialized skills and the supply dwindles as working-age populations grow older and boomers retire. There is greater power for individual employees to exercise personal choice regarding the type of work they do and for whom they do it. Attracting and retaining skilled, knowledge-based talent will be a key competitive differentiator in the coming years. In fact, talent will be the only sustainable differentiator.
Empirical evidence abounds that succession planning and management development can and do contribute to extraordinary business success. Thanks to the recession, senior management has been focused on cost cutting and survival for the past several years. But now it’s time for leaders to invest in employees who will create organizational sustainability and competitive advantage, which must be based on talent. Having the best people in pivotal leadership roles, prepared to step in at any time, is essential for future success and to avoid the performance issues that follow sudden key leadership departures.
When executed effectively, succession management is a core business process, built into the fabric of the organization. It is integral to an organization’s culture and is systemically linked to the foundational underpinnings of performance. It is not enough to focus merely on replacement planning. It needs to be recognized as a systemized business imperative; critical for long-term planning, capability development and execution of business strategy. Over time, it becomes a continuous process integrated with an organization’s business planning and organizational capability development cycles.
Succession planning is at the core of strategic, long-term, organizational viability. Aligning talent with business strategy in this way enhances the prospects of delivering on short-and long-term objectives. Having a solid, systemic approach to succession management is essential for organizational growth and sustainability.
Join us for the 2nd Annual Strategic Succession Planning Summit, where we will examine the evolution of succession planning as we reveal how a number of best practice organizations are leading the way. Industry experts will share their experiences within the areas of workforce planning, career management, leadership development, high impact technologies, high potential assessment & development, and learning & development that can drive increased productivity and business excellence in your organization.
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