By JOSEPH KABUYE
Finally, he announces his retirement and everyone starts wondering who is next in line for the management position that’s about to go vacant. All the potential candidates start to panic and lay strategies on how they can beat their opponents. This is
what happens in organisations that do not have well laid out succession structures.
Succession planning is a process through which an organization develops and grooms their employees for recruitment and promotion purposes. The goal is to fill key roles within the company with well-trained employees, often prepared through skills development for the assumption of more challenging duties within the organisation. Here are some guidelines to help you fill a potential vacancy through succession planning
Identify the individuals who will succeed the current high-level positions within the company. Hiring only the top individuals and then choosing the best and brightest among them is usually how the successors are chosen.
Develop a training programme
A training programme gives the individuals the appropriate knowledge and skill sets for the challenges they will face in the future. Some training might need to be individualised for potential successors so that they can surpass expectations. Typically, a good training programme should give them hands-on experience and gradually increasing responsibility under the guidance of their predecessor.
Promote the successor when they are ready. Giving them constant challenges will encourage them to grow and learn.
When promotions are not forthcoming, the potential successor can become stagnant.
Create a timetable for when the successor can take over the position. Promotions give the individual the skill sets, but there should be a finite deadline for when successors will fully assume their new duties. Allow a little extra time on the timeline so that the individual has a chance to overcome potential obstacles without rushing.
Those without the appropriate education or skills should not be considered candidates until they possess the appropriate qualifications. Similarly, all of the decision-makers need to agree on potential candidates because without the support of key personnel in the company, successors will find it difficult to succeed.
The writer is an industrial and organisational psychologist