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Blog By: Jeanne Hines, SPHR

In the 1960’s the Rolling Stones had a very popular tune called, “Time is on my side.”  About 10 years later, they switched things up in a song called, “Time waits for no one.”  It’s funny how our perspective changes over time.  Is time on your side or is it passing you by at the speed of light?

We all have a finite amount of time in which to accomplish our life’s work.  As you think about your business or your career, who will carry on your work?  Finding, training and mentoring the people who will continue your work is important to the viability and success of your company after you’ve retired or moved on. 

Succession planning allows a business to develop plans with their employees to prepare them for taking on greater responsibility, in anticipation of the need for new leadership in the future.  My last blog was devoted to the selection and assessment.  Today’s focus is on creating a development plan.

Experts in the area of employee development have estimated that about 80% of the learning and development of people who ultimately move into top leadership roles comes from experience.  The rest of their preparedness comes from a combination of classroom education, coaching, and mentoring.  Development exercises that are done as part of one’s current job are preferred over classroom exercises because they eliminate the disconnect between education and execution. 

Generally, development exercises fall into a couple of areas, either knowledge or skills development.  Most people need a combination of both.  Once activities are identified, it is also important to put a viable timeline on completion of the activities and follow up with the individual on a regular basis to discuss and assess progress. 

You can obtain more information about succession planning by listening to our webinar on February 6th, 2013 at noon.  Registration is available here.
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