When leaders are asked, “What talent concern frequently keeps you up at night?” one of the most common answers is they are concerned they will lose their superstar. No one wants their key producer to leave, but hoping they stay or showering them with pleasures won’t make leaders feel less exposed.
Every key position should have a succession plan. An effective plan brings peace of mind to the leader as well as the incumbent. The leader can rest easy knowing if their superstar leaves, for whatever reason, they have a plan to fill the role. The leader also feels less trapped knowing they have a plan (this applies to positions with poor performers as well).
The direct report feels better knowing the organization is not stuck should they move on and allows them to pursue growth opportunities — even within the organization. A direct report feels completely trapped when they hear “You are so wonderful at your work, we could never have anyone else in your role.” This essentially tells them their career is over
An effective succession plan should include:
- sources for filling the position,
- job accountabilities,
- job function documentation.
Empowered superstars have a succession plan and experience more success.