The High Cost of Poor Succession Planning | Harvard Business Review

Talent Management

I have posted previously about various reports suggesting that firms will find their CEO and C-suite succession bench at risk once they enter a full recovery from the pandemic (see DDI and strategy + business). This HBR article suggests that many large firms can fuel their leadership pipeline through four areas. 1) Purposefully identify and develop your rising stars by assessing capabilities (e.g., curiosity, insight, engagement, and determination) that signal potential. 2) Appoint the most promising executives to the board—or give them more access to it (e.g., boards can often have little to no insight into top internal executives. 3) Look at internal and external candidates 4) If you partner with search consultants, avoid the usual perverse incentives, such as the contingency fee. For example, “many oversell high-priced outsiders and shoot down internal alternatives. The solution is to swap the percentage fee with a prearranged fixed fee that’s based on the importance of the position and the complexity of the search and to replace the contingency fee with a retainer so that the consultant is paid the same no matter who is appointed.” Other ideas are discussed.

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