Last week a large group of us were fortunate enough to attend a presentation at our March breakfast with Justin Lippiatt.

Justin discussed the importance of succession planning – that is, to invest in your team, ensure the business can survive without you, ensure that the information and IP for the business can be accessed from those who will need it to continue your business and creating a team that ensures the business runs smoothly, regardless of hiccups such as sick days or leave.

Here are the notes from Justin’s presentation.

These notes are Justin’s personal notes; If you didn’t attend, but would like to know more, perhaps get in touch with us at the Chamber so we can put you in touch with someone who attended, or walk you through the points ourselves!

Keys to Succession Planning

Understanding strengths and passions of the team

    1. StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath
    2. Passions and Drivers
    3. Staff your weaknesses
    4. Develop a skills matrix
    5. Staff your weaknesses
    6. Don’t hire people like you!
    7. Same mindset – different skillset!

Moving from a functional team to a cross-functional team

    1. The functional team
    2. Job and role descriptions
    3. Manage expectations – yours and theirs
    4. Develop cross-functionality – it’s about competence and attitude
    5. If you throw them in the deep end, make sure you are there to support them or to rescue them
    6. Look for fulfilment – what can we do to help them be fulfilled – at home, in the community, and at work
    7. Seek alignment – find the commonalities in values. Seek to align their personal values with that of the organisation.
    8. Keep them engaged – what motivates them? It’s the retention factor
    9. Fulfilled + aligned = engaged. EngagedàHigh performance

Eliminating “Key-man” risk

    1. A small business owner is the biggest “key-man” risk
    2. Bigger organisations lose intellectual property, wisdom, experience and hands
    3. Ask: where is all the knowledge recorded
    4. Who is the 2IC?
    5. Who is the 3IC?
    6. What do you have to do to provide the leadership, relationship skills to help them fulfil your role better than you ever could?

Making yourself ‘redundant” – leading the team to manage the business

    1. None of us are irreplaceable or indispensable – life happens
    2. If your business dies because you do – you have not developed a succession plan
    3. Develop ways to develop your team’s strengths and keep them engaged!
    4. Focus on leading your team – to manage the business
    5. If you are not there, and the team can manage the business better than you can by yourself – you have succeeded!

Leadership author John Maxwell said, “Success is when you succeed for yourself. Significance is when you achieve for others”. Don’t just be successful – be significant!