Title: Succession Management:  Reality vs. Imagination (part 2 of 3)

Author:  Nicole Murray 

Welcome back to part two of the story of Frank Jones, the fictitious founder of Ajazz Manufacturing, Inc. We just learned that Frank has returned from his doctor with the recommendation to take a hiatus from his work due to his declining health and consider retiring soon. Ajazz is a flourishing bicycle component manufacturer with more than 30 years in the market. 

For many years Frank has intently focused on integrating strong company values and vision. He has worked tirelessly to establish a culture that is strategically motivated to drive cycling innovation and product market share. Last year his strategic goals included increasing sales by 5%, initiating a new product line, and entering the e-bike market with an innovative, longer-lasting battery. However, his impending exit and resulting leadership gap challenges the company’s ability to move forward with achieving these goals.   

A big challenge for organizations is the ability to maintain growth and strategic focus during succession transition. Business must continue while a successor is identified, developed, and put in position. The ability to align talent growth with strategic initiatives is one of the most prevalent weaknesses in most succession plans.   

Recent HBR studies concluded that the cost of failure of a succession plan can add up to 10 times the annual salary of the leader.  Moreover, Deloitte found that 86% of leaders believe leadership succession planning is urgent or an important priority, but only 14% believe their company does it well. This exemplifies the same gap Frank finds himself in – the gap between an imagined future vs reality.   

S3, Strategic Talent Solutions, is constructed in phases that are designed to help guide organizations through the entire succession and talent development process. The first phase is centered on discovery with the goal of understanding a company’s talent needs. The second phase focuses on assessing and benchmarking positions to clarify talent capital and how best to tap into your unique pool. Understanding your bench strength is critical to success.  S3’s process develops successful strategies to identify, develop and grow leadership talent.   

In Frank’s scenario, phase two would help identify both critical roles needed for success, and also would spotlight two potential internal candidates. However, each candidate has deficits in knowledge and/or skill sets which will require further assessment and a development plan.  As with Part One, if you were Frank, what would you do?   

Stay tuned to hear more about Frank and Ajazz!   

Wondering about your company’s talent and succession readiness? Access our talent questionnaire, answer 7 important questions, and receive immediate feedback on your talent preparedness.

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Visit https://mysolutionsatwork.com/solutions/s3-strategic-talent-solutions/ to find out more about this dynamic program.