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Why Organizations Need Succession Planning

“A leader's lasting value is measured by succession.” – John Maxwell

How well you inspired and trained those you leave behind is the true measure of your legacy. Your long-term value will be determined by succession, and your leadership ability will be judged by how successfully your people and organization performed after you left.

Succession planning is more than just selecting successors when someone steps down. It takes time and effort to perform such preparation, and it follows a procedure to identify the qualified individuals for the positions.

Succession planning is a strategy or a process in which employees are recruited and developed with the aim of filling a key role within an organization. It helps organizations prepare for future business issues by recognizing leadership requirements and preparing leaders who can fill senior positions when they become vacant. It can be applied across all levels within an organization, from senior executives through to line managers in every function. Succession planning strives to strengthen an organization's management team by ensuring that qualified managers are constantly available.

Furthermore, it generates a pool of talented internal candidates for empty positions up to and including CEO, so that an organization is not dependent on external talent for future growth or replacement of talent as incumbents retire. By ensuring that there are internal replacements ready when key individuals retire or leave their jobs, succession planning helps to keep an organization fluid and adaptive. It also relieves managers of the pressure to make short-term decisions that do not benefit the company in the long run.

It ensures that there is no leadership vacuum in the event of a senior officer's retirement or resignation, as well as a technique to save recruitment expenses by allowing organizations to manage recruitment in-house.

This type of planning should not be confined to executive roles; it should be applied to all job positions in order to prepare the organization for unanticipated changes that may harm or disrupt the business.

In most firms, the HR department oversees finding both internal and external candidates who are qualified for the role. The procedure begins with identifying potential replacements based on the competencies of the current leader. If someone from within the firm is a perfect fit, he or she must go through training so that HR or the company can monitor or oversee their performance. This is a very advantageous technique for businesses; some businesses even create an emergency succession plan to ensure a smooth transition when its leaders retire, become incapacitated, or die unexpectedly. A succession plan ensures that staff are ready to take over important management responsibilities left by departing executives.

The benefits of effective succession planning are wide-ranging and can contribute directly to an organization's bottom line depending on how well suited the individual is for their role. Here’s some of succession planning benefits according to the Corporate Finance Institute:

  1. Helps identify future leaders Since it is mainly about identifying best candidates for vacant positions, it can also assist you in discovering personnel with special skills and abilities, as well as weaknesses that may require more attention.

  2. Minimizes recruitment costs An organization can take internal replacements as part of succession planning. Internal replacements save money that would otherwise be spent on external recruitment. Companies spend millions on recruitment every year, and succession planning can help cut expenses.

  3. Helps identify and address competency gaps Aside from identifying flaws, succession planning can also reveal employee competency gaps. The disparity between the employees' existing competency level and the necessary competency level is what these gaps are. These gaps may be caused by a variety of factors, but they will undoubtedly help the firm create better training or talent management.

  4. Keeps company buoyant When a significant member leaves an organization, it can create issues that influence the entire organization. Finding a replacement on time will never be a problem with succession planning, and if done correctly, it can also inspire staff to participate in crucial decision-making functions.

Here at Customized Training Solutions, we help leaders sustain and develop their own leadership skills through coaching, training and consulting. Book a free 30 minute call now to find out how we can help you!


Meinert, D. (2018, June 21). Succession Planning Is Easier Than You Think. SHRM. development/pages/succession-planning-is-easier-than-you-think.aspx

Succession Planning - Importance of a Good Leadership Transition. (2017). Corporate Finance Institute. planning/


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