April 20, 2019
Succession Planning 24 January 2017
Top 3 Things to Include in Your Business Succession Plan
Gisel Malek
upward. career plan, career trajectory

Putting a plan in place requires a great deal of organization and thought. This goes for pretty much any plan, but especially for an organization's business succession plan. So what is a succession plan? 

Succession planning is a process for identifying and developing new leaders who can replace old leaders when they leave, retire or die. In dictatorships, it aims for continuity of leadership, preventing a chaotic power struggle by preventing a power vacuum.

That's the technical definition. Essentially it means this: As companies continue their search for qualified candidates, they are hindering themselves by not focusing on training and investing in the employees that they have. 

For example, if a company has a cashier that has been working for a couple of years and does his job very well, fits in with the company culture and has growth potential, it would be far more beneficial for companies to invest in promoting him instead of hiring someone from the outside for a managerial position. While they may have more managerial experience, they come in with a different set of techniques, beliefs and a way of doing things and it could be costly to get someone who already is getting paid a higher salary to learn how your company does things. 

We've got an easier way to think about it - pathways. Everyone is seeking to be on a path towards success, and now you can implement it into your recruiting strategy.

It seems logical that companies would want to train and develop their employees to take on more leadership roles, promoting a "hire from within" culture, but fail to do so successfully. Putting people on a path is crucial to an employee's success, but even more, the company's!

Not sure how to create your plan? Have no fear! We've come up with the 3 crucial "must-haves" in your plan:

1. Training and Development

I'm not talking about those boring 90's videos that make everyone fall asleep. I'm talking about a personalized experience that is directly related to the career path of each individual employee. If you want your SDR to become an account Executive and then a Sales manager in 5 years time, specific knowledge, and training needs to be provided. This will not only help you get more out of your employee, but it will satisfy your millennial's thirst for career development and show them you are invested in their career. 

2. Evaluating for Technical/Behavioral Skills

Deciding who is going to move on and get promoted within your company is a big decision and one that requires a great deal of consideration. When you are thinking about the long run and the career of the employee you hire (if you are not - you should be!) It is important to take into account the entire onboarding process. 

From the minute you come into contact with a candidate, setting up the appropriate projects and challenges for them to work on will help you to determine who is best suited to the open role. Get into the habit of evaluating your candidates for the skills you know are needed to move on in their career pathway. 

You may not require someone to have leadership skills for an entry level role, but if you want them to move on in their career, leading a team will require managerial skills. Having a pathway in mind at all times will lead to overall recruiting success and employee retention. 

3. Getting Hiring Executives Involved

The best way to implement "pathways" is by getting the C-Suite and hiring managers all on the same page. There is a huge disconnect in the industry and it begins with a lack of communication of what the hiring needs are. Skills or characteristics mary vary from department to department. 

An engineer may complete a coding challenge, while a marketing hire may run a campaign over the course of a week or two. These procedures are designed to determine if the candidate can really do what they say they can and if they fit in well with the company culture. ProSky’s platform allows companies to hire qualified candidates, place them on a career track and train them properly on skills they need to do their jobs well. 

Evaluating your candidates from the first point of contact will allow you to hire the most qualified candidates for your company. Setting up the proper training to get them to the next level will help you keep employees and reduce turnover rates. Bridging the communication gap between the needs of the individual departments and those of the company will help you find the people that are most suited to your company. 

So, what are you waiting for? Get started on creating effective pathways for your employees!