Succession planning involves the identification as well as development of new leaders that
will replace the old leaders when they leave, retire, or die. It is an important process because
it ensures that there is continuity in the organization. It makes it possible for the company to
have experienced and skilled employees that can take up the vacant positions. In the
dictatorships, good succession planning plays an important role in preventing power struggles
and preventing a power vacuum. In many organizations, human resource management
recruits graduate trainees that are given the necessary skills that will enable them to take up
different roles in the organization. The graduate trainees work under the current staff to
ensure that they learn the necessary skills that will enable them to comfortably take the
position of leadership in the case on the employee leaves, retires, or dies.
Importance of succession planning
Succession planning is essential due to the fact that it is at the heart of the process of talent
management and ensures that the most important roles in the organizations are identified and
that the company has the right type of employees in such positions. It makes sure that the
company or organization has the right people, at the right places and at the right time as a
way of ensuring that the company succeeds in the tasks that they take part in. A company
should always prepare the next generation of leaders that will take over from the current
leader. The succession planning is not only important in the cases where the employees leave
the workplace but also may be important in the cases where the employees are
underperforming, and the company needs a new crop of leaders that will lead to the success
of the organization.
It prevents a vacuum in the company making sure that the activities are carried out in the
best way possible. In the case where there is a vacuum in a given organization, it means that
there are several departments that will go unattended to and in so doing the company may
undergo some losses. Succession planning is therefore important because it prevents such
cases for the benefit of the society.
The 9-box grid (Figure 9.5) and its usefulness
A 9-box grid is a tool that is used by the human resource management in many companies to
talk about the career improvement of the employees and succession planning. The employees
are mapped against two axes, that is their current performance and their future potential. The
management and the HR assign the employees to relevant boxes based on their current
performance and future potential. The current performance of the employees is represented
on the x-axis, whereas the future potential is represented on the y-axis, which is a prediction
of their future performance. The conversations on the performance of the employees
compared to the future potential need to be informed. However, the 9-box is iterative. The
insight regarding the current performance of the employee and the future performance of the
same employee may shift thinking about another. The aptitudes into the future are made by
holding discussions about the organizational objectives or the competitor landscape.
The importance of the tool is that it encourages dialogue between the human resource
management and the management of the organization in such a way that they can come up
with the right decision that will be beneficial for the organization. The tool also enables the
company to get a fresh perspective of issues by listening to what the other people have to say
with regards to an issue. The important thing about other people’s opinions is the fact that
they will help an individual or organization to identify the mistakes done.
Noe, R. A., Hollenbeck, J. R., Gerhart, B., & Wright, P. M. (2017). Human resource
management: Gaining a competitive advantage. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education.