Success in Succession – A Primer
(PART ONE of The New Generation of Leaders series)
Every company aspires to be thriving for many years. Yet there are still a few who neglect to plan for their future. If growth is seriously in the books, then preparing people to accommodate such growth must be part of the strategy.
Succession planning is not merely about creating a failsafe when a manager leaves, although that is clearly one of its functions. Succession is a critical aspect of growth when departments expand to accommodate the rising demands of the company. Effective leaders need effective lieutenants to continue with the vision and preserve the culture in their absence. Proper leadership detection, development, and delegation ensure that the business is able to scale up while maintaining the standards, quality, and direction across the organization.
Succession is not about internal competition, either. A good, healthy competition between employees has the potential of setting higher standards, new initiatives, and more assertive behavior. But seeking and training leaders is not meant to be a battleground for the corporate ladder. This training must promote collaboration, build relationships, and develop in the trainee a better understanding of what motivates the company in pursuing the vision set in front of them.
Is leadership for everyone? It can be, but a budding leader must have a clear view of the company’s vision and mission, and embrace the core values tightly as part of their lifestyle. They need to have an above-ground perspective on their scope of operations, take absolute ownership of everything within their realm, and ensure that their team is put ahead of themselves. As Simon Sinek has popularized in his book, leaders must learn to eat last. Self-promotion and wresting privileges should not even be in the mindset of any leader.
Leadership is a service role, and it’s packed with responsibilities. If there’s any glory to be found in leadership, it is the pride of taking your ship to sea and sailing towards your success milestones. A leader is felt when his or her impact reverberates through the workforce’s output and behavior. As a leader, your every intention must take into consideration the benefit of the company and the people.
In Part Two, we will talk more about how L3 is launching its leadership program, and what challenges are we trying to solve along the way.