It's Time To Rethink Succession

COVID-19 has cast a lasting shadow on our lives. At no time during the past hundred years has our kind been made to appear so mortal. The organisation that got us here isn't going to get us where we need to be. Not even halfway.

The engine that moved the developed world from poverty at the beginning of the 20th century to the extraordinary standard of living we currently enjoy was the so-called "modern organisation". Hierarchical, control-dominated and ideally suited to a slowly unfolding world (built to last) it may have been, but it created unprecedented wealth. The dilemma? Breakthrough technology, uncertainty, the increasing speed of change and the redefinition of "work" demand an organisation that is a fit for the 21st century (built to change).

We are describing not just a better, but a very different kind of way to operate. An organisation where disruption, agility and speed of learning dominate the leadership conversation - one that redefines what it means to be a leader - one that demands a more robust process to identify and develop future leaders. We refer to it as "succession planning". A better description would be "planning for success". There are a good many issues that can derail a successful business. None, however, contain the potency for failure as having the wrong leader in the wrong role at the wrong time.

Without talent, mediocracy is a given. And without effective succession planning tomorrow will, at best, be a replay of today. The evidence is that few organisations have a highly effective succession process. There is every reason to believe it's time to rethink succession. The "It's Time To Rethink Succession" Executive Playbook invites you to assess your current process and, where deemed necessary, align succession with the unprecedented challenge and opportunity this century represents:

  • Coming Down the Mountain
    • All Learning Starts with a Question
    • The Succession Imperative
  • Why Does Succession Fail?
    • Lack of Direction from the Board
    • A Broken or Incomplete Process
    • Confusing Succession with Replacement
    • Casting Too Wide a Net
    • Confusing High Performance with High Potential
    • Inappropriate Leadership Competencies
    • The Future Culture Is a "Best Guess"
    • Coaching Is "Something We Need to Get To"
    • What It Means to Be a Team
    • Succession Candidates Are Poorly Integrated into the New Role
  • Conclusion
  • Appendix One
  • The TRANSEARCH Succession Process

Download "It's Time To Rethink Succession".