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Succession Planning Broken Down Into Three Simple Stages

Stuart Bollefer

Stuart Bollefer joined Toronto’s Aird and Berlis, LLP, in 2000 and continues to oversee activities as partner and chair of the firm’s wealth management and succession planning group. In this role, Stuart Bollefer works with a wide range of clients, from start-up operations to high-net-worth clients valued in the billions.

Succession planning is an integral component of a business’s ability to continuously thrive and achieve long-term strategic goals. Succession planning should be on the mind of every business leader, from seasoned veterans driving operations at large corporations to ambitious entrepreneurs establishing a startup company. With that said, succession planning does not typically prove to be an urgent matter, particularly at the outset of an organization’s operations, and can often be completed in phases.
To start, leadership should review the role of every key performer in the organization and question how a sudden departure would impact overall operations. Beyond replacing this individual in a timely, effective manner, organizations must consider how to minimize disruption to productivity in the short-term before an adequate replacement can be installed. Moving forward, companies can begin determining what in-house employees are ready or near ready to assume a larger role in the event of a change at the top, and what positions might need to be filled by an outside hire. Finally, organizations can formalize succession planning processes to ensure optimal continuity regardless of how or when a key member leaves the team.

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