In developing a succession plan, is it smart to inform successors that they are indeed, the successors?
There are a lot of pros/cons for informing successors of their status within an organization. Some argue that informing successors can lead to an increase in poaching of high potentials. Others argue that not informing successors can lead to anxiety. Some of the pros of informing successors include communicating openness, motivating employees to further develop themselves, and providing reason behind different development initiatives.
I agree with most that you should definitely tell them and include them in the planning. Make sure everyone is on the same page in order to best move forward.
Whether we like to think so or not, life is a test both in business and in our lives outside the office walls. If your organization has a leadership or management development program, then by all means, those individuals invited into the program will know what is up. As a leader, part of your job is to extend the organizational vision as well your own to everyone else so as to create an engaged workforce. You want the organization to keep moving forward and upward and that will take a new generation educated and immersed in things you are not fully able to work with. If you are smart, you will walk around, talk to those working for the company and listen to your management team and ensure that you are informed about the people and the projects. You can create challenges for rising stars, but do so in a fashion where they will not be able to brag or think something is up. Not until you are ready to name a successor should you say anything. Once you have found that individual, you need to create a succession plan where you will work with them and have them rotate around the organization.
Yes to the question - and to respond to the text after, that is why attorney's draw up non-compete agreements, clauses non-circs non-disclosures to keep things tight within a business. This is a question for a business law attorney who can have the counsel of a intellectual property rights attorney at bay, and perhaps an attorney experienced with trusts, depending upon your business structure and how your assets are protected. This is a Pandora's box question which you need big experts on your team.
I'm curious about how you've made your decisions about who will be your successors. Have you met with the prospective successors to make sure that your plans for them match their career goals? Have you considered providing and assessment to those interested and qualified to see who would be the best fit for the positions that you need to fill? If you're clear about who will be your successors and the process for this decision making seems fair to the employees, I think an open approach is the best way to go.
It's smart to inform successors if you want to exhibit transparency, foster cooperation, and maintain the success of the enterprise.
If someone can be poached, they weren't committed to the position you were going to offer them in the first place. Knowing that they are being groomed for a higher position may also be a motivator to stay with the organization.
Also, if a position is particularly complex, it's a smart move to create a long-term structure wherein the successor is gradually trained in the skills of his/her predecessor, along with doing some shadowing before the position is made vacant.
It is inappropriate to inform the successors mainly becoz there cud demoralize the other team members who are already into the race..
In my view, let the team be nurtured and the Leader should be placed spontaneously without giving them to discuss and resist.
I think it is important to inform them but prior to this let others who may think that it is them know first then explain why the decision was made in clear terms. Be confident in your decision. Letting them know and having steps set for the transaction will be important.
Yes. Then they can start acting like leaders and if they don't, you can prune them.
Hi Michael, I would argue for definitely telling successors of what you're planning. I believe that REAL leadership is born through transparency and strategy. Yes of course a person might feel nervous or a little anxious, but this is also one way to find out for sure if they're the right person for the job, if they are not really right for the position its better you know sooner than later. Luke