Let’s begin by defining the difference between succession planning and talent development. Succession planning is a process used by companies to identify and develop internal employees with a potential to fill key leadership positions. Talent development generally refers to how a company develops their workforce with the goal of improving overall performance to remain relevant and competitive in their respective industry. Talent development has an individual focus while succession planning ensures that the broader requirements of a business, like strategic goals, are met.
Reality paints a dismal picture. According to research from a 2019 ATD only 35% of businesses have a plan in place to develop leadership and ensure the long-term viability of their strategic success. This means that many organizations are woefully unprepared to transfer the mantle of leadership. Professionals at Solutions At Work and Potentia.works started asking what’s really going on? Why are businesses so apprehensive about developing their staff? The answer is complicated, to say the least.
In some cases it is discomfort with the topic of replacing a leader, in others – there is no structured leadership development path. Additionally, the realization that a company lacks “bench strength” throughout their organization can lead to an overwhelming “domino effect”. To those unfamiliar with this term, it refers to the impact of position vacancies that begin to snowball in further gaps and losses of employees. This may further exacerbate a C-Suite’s growing lack of confidence in their organization’s ability to effectively develop employees. Struggling to understand how talent management [development] plans align with strategic business and growth goals is also a concern. It has been likened to peeling an onion, each layer can bring additional concerns and challenges.
Specific weaknesses caused by a lack of a plan for talent development, whether for succession or for progression, were also identified. The ability to align talent growth with strategic initiatives is one that topped the list. Add to the list costly mis-hires and delays in filling vacancies, and it is easy to see why businesses struggle.
S3 is designed to help bring clarity and confidence to businesses. The program begins with a discovery phase which helps companies begin to understand their talent needs. The 2nd phase is about assessment and benchmarking and allows a clearer understanding of the talent capital and how best to tap into this unique pool. The 3rd and final phase emphasizes creating and developing talent potential and serves to build “bench strength” throughout the organization. The desired goal is to build a sustainable framework for the continuous development of future leaders.
Wondering about your company’s talent and succession readiness? Access our talent questionnaire, and answer 7 important questions and receive immediate feedback on your talent preparedness. (Your privacy is important and your information will not be shared.) Go to https://mysolutionsatwork.com/solutions/s3-strategic-talent-solutions/ to find out more about this dynamic program.