In an ideal world, shepherding an effective leadership transition is aligned with the team’s strategic plan. A three year preview of the organization’s vision shapes business goals, tactics, and accountabilities. Once everyone is on board with the overall direction of the enterprise, who/what/where/when questions are easier to navigate. The “how” question is a bit tricky.
The legacy of a leader if often determined more by the way in which he or she finishes the job than by the accomplishments that populate a resume, a LinkedIn profile, or an award banquet speech. It takes a blend of confidence and grace to make space for the person who will someday occupy your desk. Like the passing of a baton in a relay race, both the giver and receiver have interdependent roles.
Follow your strategic plan with whiteboard session:
• Invite the right teammates into the room.
• Begin with a conversation about the transitions that lie ahead.
• Acknowledge the delicacy of the exchange and fill it with respect for old, new, similarities, and differences.
• Draw up the organizational chart of the future from current state to change state to desired state.
• Collaboratively evaluate your talent needs over time.
• Voice a commitment to stewarding a healthy change and divvy up responsibility for the tasks required to make it happen.
Author your legacy.