10 Updates

Succession Planning Is Every Leader's Job

Apr 23 2014, 4:59pm CDT | by

Though most companies conduct some sort of succession planning process, few executives feel that they have adequate bench strength. As a result, according to a 2009 study , only a little more than...

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13 weeks ago

Succession Planning Is Every Leader's Job

Apr 23 2014, 4:59pm CDT | by

Though most companies conduct some sort of succession planning process, few executives feel that they have adequate bench strength. As a result, according to a 2009 study , only a little more than 60% of first level managerial positions and 52% of senior positions are hired from within.

Obviously this is just one study and numbers may have improved in the past few years, but even if they are off by 10%, the results are still disturbing, for two reasons:

First, it’s more expensive to hire externally, particularly at senior levels. Companies need to run advertisements, pay recruiters, and ask internal people to spend company time sorting through resumes and conducting interviews. There is also evidence from a Wharton study that external hires are generally paid more than comparable internal people. After all, most people won’t risk switching companies unless there is a financial incentive. However, the most significant expense is from lost or diminished productivity. Onboarding to a new company and culture takes time , which means that externally hired managers may not add full value for months, or even years — another finding from the Wharton research.

The second problem is that it puts the company at risk. Without ready-to-go replacements, jobs can remain open for long periods of time, which can delay projects or reduce the effectiveness of day-to-day operations. What’s even worse is that focusing on external hires sends a signal to internal people that they are not “good enough” to be promoted, or that their opportunities are limited. And without a sense of future possibilities, morale suffers and commitment wanes.

Simply going through the motions of succession planning won’t create bench strength by itself — nor will it convince managers that they will have future opportunities. In fact, the best that a good process can do is to analytically highlight the gaps where successors are needed. In one company, for example, the head of talent created a wonderful “book” which mapped out all of the key positions, strengths and weaknesses of incumbents, and successors who could step into these jobs either immediately, in one year, or three years. The only problem, as the Board Committee pointed out, was that there were virtually no immediate replacements for any of the top executives.

To make succession-planning a success, there are two inter-connected ingredients that need to be added to the mix. The first is a genuine commitment, at every level of management, that identifying and developing bench strength is a critical leadership responsibility — and that managers need to be held accountable for making sure they have successors in place. This means that while the HR function can provide support and guidance, and coordinate the planning process, it is managers who have to make it happen.

The second ingredient is an active development process to prepare people for next-level jobs. This too needs to be part of each manager’s responsibility — to help subordinates identify developmental needs and career aspirations, and consciously build learning objectives into their work.

It’s easy for managers to point fingers at the HR function or at senior executives for a lack of bench strength. Creating successors, however, is every manager’s job. In fact, if you really want to move on or move up, you need to make sure that you have someone in place who can take over when you are ready to go.

Editor’s Note:  version of this blog  was cross-posted on HBR.org .

 
Update
10

6 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Cambodia's Famous Battambang Circus
KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the Dewa ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

6 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Melbourne Rising Media Launch
KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was broken into by robb ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

6 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Federal Aviation Administration Bans All US Flights To Israel
KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejected by the D ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

6 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Hisha ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

6 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

INDIA-CHINA-DIPLOMACY-TRADE
PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ in the sou ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

6 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Government Weekly Cabinet Meeting
KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

7 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said. ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

Iskandar Johor Open - Previews
JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involving an allocation of ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

7 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM - Day One
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramada ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

7 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Ki ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

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