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Meeting The Challenge Of Succession Planning

Succession planning represents the board’s paramount opportunity to shape a company’s future. In an era where CEO tenures are becoming shorter, and turnover rates are on the rise, boards need to be increasingly focused on nurturing a robust leadership pipeline.

However, mastering the art of succession planning is no simple feat. I’ve seen it fail too many times. It calls for substantial effort, dedicated time, and a meticulously considered approach. Are you equipped with a well-defined strategy for identifying and cultivating your next CEO or C-suite executive?

Here are 6 questions to help you build a future-fit succession strategy.

◾️ How realistic are your expectations around how challenging leadership succession can be, especially the CEO role?

◾️ What timeframe have you set bearing in mind an end-to-end search and leadership transition can take a minimum of 12 months or longer?

◾️ What plausible options do you have internally and how have you assessed that talent?

◾️How do internal candidates stack up against the external market?

◾️How aligned is the company around the profile of the successor?

◾️What internal comms plan has been set around succession so you remain in control of the message to your people?

Making a wrong choice in hiring a leader has huge financial and cultural ramifications so having a well-orchestrated approach to succession is critical.

The longer it might take to replace a senior leader the worse the impact on the company. Unexpected departures or retirements can cause significant disruptions. Succession planning anticipates and prepares for these transitions, minimising downtime and maintaining operational efficiency.

When you create a culture of ongoing development that identifies and nurtures your leadership team it allows room for tailored support and coaching programmes, such as those provided by our sister company NewlandRock ensuring leaders are ready to step into critical roles when needed.

Having a talent management strategy and clear succession plan helps to keep your leadership team engaged and lessens the potential impact of a leader leaving a huge gap in your organisation.

For more advice and support to help you design, improve and implement an effective long-term succession strategy please contact me at BartonRock Executive Search or Kate Thomas at NewlandRock for advice on executive assessment and coaching.

About BartonRock: BartonRock is the executive search partner for high-growth consumer and retail businesses

We manage the careers of executives whose know-how and commercial acumen steer the strategic direction for companies to thrive.

Our assignments search for executives who understand how to operate in dynamic and entrepreneurial environments.

For more information visit: or contact or call +44 (0) 20 8092 6048.

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Looking for support in Leadership Effectiveness? Speak to our sister company led by Kate Thomas

Focused on Assessment | Executive Coaching | Wellbeing Solutions – Internationally