In Part 1 of this topic I introduced the concept of succession management and the importance of career planning when it comes to retaining your employees and creating a culture of growth. In Part 2 we’ll dive deeper into the individual needs of your employees and how communication is central to the success of your ongoing succession plan.
Effective succession planning goes beyond a one-time event; it’s important to plan with your team and encourage the continual development of your staff through mentoring, regular check-ins, goal setting and strategic evaluation over time. Career plans are no longer static, and as companies continue to downsize and flatten, traditional career ladders are becoming less prevalent. Instead, helping your employees seek opportunities to grow and having authentic, timely conversations about their personal and professional goals can have a huge influence on how engaged they are, their perception of where or how they work, and how supported they feel on their professional journey.
Particularly when managing a multi-generational workforce, each of these different demographics has varying needs, wants and expectations. Baby boomers, for example, might have typically enjoyed decade-long careers while millennials will seek multiple jobs throughout their lifetime. With this in mind, succession planning then isn’t just about finding the right talent, but also dealing with high rates of turnover within younger generations. Yet in the race to replace older generations and retain the millennials, it’s important you don’t forget about Gen X. This demographic is often next in line to step into leadership roles as older generations move into retirement, but if they’re continually looked over in favour of millennials or sense a ‘grey ceiling’ looming above them, they might leave to follow their career dreams elsewhere.
Once stripped back, the common thread is all about communication. Communicating and planning across the board is essential, not only regarding succession management but planning for growth and being prepared for successions when they arrive. Staying ahead of the curve by understanding each employee’s individual growth trajectory and communicating openly with your team has long-lasting results; effective leadership means less about ruling from the top, and more about identifying if the people who work beneath you are growing and developing.
It’s important to really know your team; we’re all humans after all – each with varying aspirations, attitudes, skills, goals and dreams – and it’s human nature to want to grow, whether that’s learning a new skill to advance your career, embracing new responsibilities, or exploring ways to find happiness and challenges in your day-today that might simultaneously help your company too.
Communication is imperative and working with your team to plan for and execute an effective growth strategy requires the right tools to do so. Inspired by my passion for strategising and deep interest in culture and career development I’m excited to announce the I’ve recently finished working on a customised business planning system that’s finally ready to launch in the market. It’s been built using years of industry knowledge and experience, drawing upon case studies and fervent analysis of the ins and outs of career planning and succession management.
If you’re looking to adopt an innovative and cost-effective approach in the new financial year, I’d love to hear from you.