Some years ago, I had a client who owned and managed a successful high-tech products company he had founded twenty years earlier. I frequently told him that no one at his company had the ability to manage its operations other than him. He needed a successor but would not hire one. Within a year of his sudden and unexpected death, that formally profitable, $20 million annual sales company was liquidated. Even worse, the owner’s wife had signed personal guarantees for company loans.
If you are the CEO of a company, make sure that there is someone within your organization who can take your place quickly and with a minimum of corporate disruption. Then make sure that that succession plan is either well understood by others in authority or is written and accessible when needed. In addition, it’s always good to examine your organization chart periodically to see which employees have the potential to replace those above them. Succession planning should extend throughout a company’s organization. Read More.