SIX TIPS FOR EFFECTIVE SUCCESSION PLANNING

What is Succession Planning?

Succession planning is a strategy for identifying and developing the leaders of the future of your advisory business. It is used to address changes that will occur in the future of the practice. This can include current employees resigning, retiring, being terminated, getting sick, or even dying. It can also help prepare for growth and filling new roles that may be needed in the advisory practice in the future.

Below are six tips for an effective succession planning campaign.

1.Be Proactive

Despite the fact that succession planning has been proven to improve an organization’s sustainability, many delays putting this plan into place, if they do it at all. Unfortunately, many financial professionals give little thought to exactly how their advisory business will run after key employees are gone. Succession planning helps to make sure that the right people take over key roles and ensure things continue to run smoothly. Succession planning does not happen overnight, and you do not want to wait until the last minute to implement a plan. Even if you do not think you will need to fill in key roles in the near future, it is never too early to be preparing the practice and potential candidates. It is like a safety net, you may not need it, but if you do, it is a lifesaver. Better safe than sorry.

2.Keep an Open Mind

Sometimes the best person for the job may not be obvious. It may seem best to promote the second-in-command or to hire someone externally who appears to have the right skills and experience. However, this is not always the case. Look for candidates who have the best potential to thrive in key roles, regardless of their current position or experience. Be open to finding excellent candidates right under your nose. Often there are employees with immense potential that goes untapped because of a lack of opportunity.

3.Identify Key Roles

Before you can determine who will fill key roles, those key roles must be defined. The advisory practice must identify which positions are paramount to the success and growth of the company. Roles should be prioritized by their effect on the practice’s ability to meet its objectives. Succession planning can also help identify which roles are not essential to the growth of the advisory business.

Once the key roles are identified, the practice can move on to determining what is required to be successful in these roles. It is critical to establish role responsibilities, goals, and performance expectations. It is also helpful to note any special skills or knowledge necessary for successful job performance.

4.Identify Top Candidates

Once the most critical roles are identified, the best options for those roles should also be identified. One of the most essential steps in succession planning is determining who should do the succeeding. Filling the role is important, but who gets put into these positions makes a world of difference for an advisory practice. It is crucial to identify current employees with the potential to fill key roles. Top candidates should be evaluated and their strengths, weaknesses, and growth areas noted. One of the key components of succession planning is the belief that internal promotions should be the priority as recruiting externally can come with higher costs and morale ramifications.

5.Share the Vision

It can only help to be transparent about succession planning with employees. As the plan is implemented, you do not want to keep them in the dark about why certain measures are taking place, such as evaluating key roles and the strengths and weaknesses of employees. Employees will also understand the need for possible mentorship and shadowing if they know the end goal for the advisory business. Succession planning can also have the advantage of motivating staff by giving them a goal to strive for and the confidence that job growth and promotion is not only possible but encouraged. In addition to that, it can help managers identify employees who show interest and enthusiasm for filling key roles.

6.Guide Top Candidates

As top candidates are identified, if possible, offer resources to guide them to success in key roles. This can include mentorships, training, and job shadowing. Provide support and resources that will help them to develop the necessary skills and knowledge to contribute to the advisory practice’s growth. Besides, keep track of the achievements of top candidates and any demonstration of key skills and traits for key roles.

Succession planning can automate the process of filling key roles with top talent, uninterrupted, from right inside the practice! Carried out well, it can motivate your staff to aspire to fill key positions in the future. This will motivate hard-working, goal-oriented employees to work hard, knowing there is growth potential. This will improve job performance, raise employee morale, and save money on hiring.

Creating a succession plan is crucial but not easy. No need to fear, though you don’t have to do it alone. The professionals at Advisor Successions help financial planners grow through acquisition and protect their advisory practice with a succession plan. If you are looking for experts on creating a successful succession plan, give Advisor Successions a call today.

Scott Brittman