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Succession Planning:

Filling and Developing


the Pipeline
Robert L. and Carolyn N. Turknett
Turknett Leadership Group
2310 Parklake Drive, Suite 500
Atlanta, GA 30345
770.270.1723
www.turknett.com
The Shoemaker and the Factory
What is Succession Planning?
A systematic process designed to:
1. Identify key leadership positions
and hard-to-fill positions
2. Identify the critical competencies
that employees in those positions
require
3. Prepare for their replacement to
ensure the continued ability of an
organization to meet its strategic
goals and supporting objectives
Succession Processes
Replacement
Planning
Succession
Planning
Succession
Management
Identification
of Successors
Yes Yes Yes
Development
of Successors
Little or
none
Yes Yes (often
Talent Pools)
Managerial
Levels
Top two or
three

Top two or
three
All, including
any key
positions
Where are we now?
Current State:
If you had to grow your leadership team by
50% in 60 days, could you?
I know exactly what it takes to be promoted
in this company. Would 75% answer yes?
Demographic Challenges:
The average age is ____ .
____ percent are over 59 years of age.
The average length of service is ____ .
What worries you:
Knowledge loss?
Hard to fill positions?
Current practices:
Using Nine-box?
Talent review discussions?
Clear development plans for high potentials?
Key Definitions
Concept Definition
Critical or
Feeder Roles
Roles that require planning because they feed
into senior management or are critical to
organization success
Developmental
Roles
Roles that provide excellent developmental
experience
High Potential
Someone who has been identified as having
the ability to advance
Nine-Box (9-
Box) Grid
Tool used to plot current performance and
future potential of a segment of the workforce
Talent Pool
A group of people being prepared for higher-
level roles
Talent Review
Broad review of talent to identify candidates
for development to higher levels. Usually
involves group discussion at multiple levels.
Basic Succession Management Cycle
Definition of Strategy and
Competencies needed for the Future
Talent Review
High Potential Identification
Assessment and Gap Analysis
Development Planning and Leadership
Development


Define
for
Future

Review
Talent

ID
High
Potentials


Assess


Develop
The Problem of Alignment




In many
organizations, each
HR service area
operates in its own
silo



P
e
r
f
o
r
m
a
n
c
e

M
a
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a
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e
m
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t

C
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p
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s
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o
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L
e
a
r
n
i
n
g

L
e
a
d
e
r
s
h
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p

D
e
v
e
l
o
p
m
e
n
t

S
t
a
f
f
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g

&

O
n
-
B
o
a
r
d
i
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g

T
a
l
e
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t

&

S
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c
c
e
s
s
i
o
n

P
l
a
n
n
i
n
g

Silos in HR
Emphasis on programs vs. outcomes
Emphasis on discrete vs. integrated approaches
#1
Define
for
Future
Competencies Create Alignment
Career
Development
Selection &
Succession
Systems
Leadership
Development
(e.g., 360)
Job
Descriptions
Structured
Behavioral
Interviews
Training
Performance
Management
CORE & FUNC.
COMPETENCIES
Define
for
Future
Define Strategy and Competencies Needed
Picture the future and define strategy
Define values
Define competencies needed for the future
Core
Leadership
Functional


Define
for
Future
Competencies
Competencies are important knowledge, skills,
abilities, behaviors, and other characteristics
required to perform a job successfully
Core Competencies are relevant to the entire
organization, and
Align with the values of the organization
Align with the strategy of the organization
Functional Competencies are specific to a position
Leadership Competencies are the competencies
specific to leaders in the organization
All Competencies are:
aligned to the specific requirements of the job
customized by organization level

Define
for
Future
Competencies are Defined Behaviorally
Defined via behavioral anchors
Describe expected performance at various
levels of position
Focus on observable/verifiable behavior
Set a standard of effectiveness
Help calibrate ratings of performance across
raters
Ensure alignment and accountability

#4
Define
for
Future
Talent Calibration and Talent Review
A bottoms up approach each manager
completes potential and performance
assessment of each direct report (feeds 9-
box)
Must have already clearly defined
performance standards and markers of
potential specific to the organization
In calibration meetings groups of managers
discuss ratings and come to consensus on
individuals must cite specific behavioral
evidence
In the Talent Review meetings senior leaders
discuss organization direction, the identified
high potential talent, diversity, and
development plans. Some assessment may
occur between calibration meetings and
review.

Review
Talent


Accelerated
Growth
Potential
Continuing investment
(May be recently promoted)
High investment, help improve
performance
High investment and/or
promote/give more
responsibility
These stars are ready for an assignment
at a higher organizational level
challenge them.


Solid
Growth
Potential

Monitor


Continuing investment

High investment, accelerate skill
development


Stable
Growth
Potential
Monitor
Need to demand performance
improvements
May be in wrong job or at wrong level.
Consider reassignment.
Continuing investment Minimal investment but continue
to reward, retain

9-Box Talent Grid
Needs Improvement Meets Expectations Exceeds Expectations
1/3
1/2
1/1
2/3
2/2
2/1
3/3
3/2
3/1
Past Performance
G
r
o
w
t
h

P
o
t
e
n
t
i
a
l


Review
Talent

Must Define Potential:
Common Criteria for Potential
Potential
Criteria
Description
Learning Agility
Ability to learn from experience, self-
reflect and grow, adapt to change, etc.
Social Skills
Basic social ability emotional intelligence
Demonstration
of Values/
Character
Demonstration of the organizations
values; integrity and character
Motivation to
Advance
High energy, wants to move to higher
levels
Likelihood to
Advance
Ability to succeed at higher positions
within a specified amount of time
Markers of potential are essential for senior leadership
but more difficult to develop.

Review
Talent

GE Adaptation Operational Excellence AND
Values are Important

Restart (Second
Opportunity)

Reward/Promote
(Leaders of the
Future)

Remove (Easy)

Remove (Sends a
message)
V
a
l
u
e
s

L
o
w

t
o

H
i
g
h

Results Low to High

Review
Talent

Identify High Potentials
ID
High
Potentials
Charles Darwin
Janis Joplin
Stanley Kubrick
Gene Siskel
Thomas Jefferson
Albert Einstein
Louis Pasteur
Henry Ford
John Kennedy
Natalie Wood
Marie Curie
Helen Keller
Mary Cassatt
Neil Armstrong
James Dean
Bruce Lee
Marilyn Monroe
Katie Couric
Johnny Carson

Charlie Chaplin
Winston Churchill
Napoleon Bonaparte
Past Performance
G
r
o
w
t
h

P
o
t
e
n
t
i
a
l

Performance Results
4
SR
4
MT
3
3
2
3
4
4
5
High
High
Low
P
o
t
e
n
t
i
a
l

A
s
s
e
s
s
m
e
n
t

Johnson & Johnson Folio Map
ID
High
Potentials
The Four Lenses*

Potential
Assessment

Performance
Results

Positions Level
of Accountability


People Development
Codes
Size of
Circle
Low
5 Outstanding
4 Superior
3 Competent
2 Needs Improvement
1 Unacceptable
Put CHARACTER at the core.
Turknett Leadership
Character Model
ID
High
Potentials
Assessment and Gap Analysis
Assessment against core, leadership and
functional competencies
Gap Analysis for each person and for each
position
Sample Assessment tools:
360 Degree Feedback
Hogan Leadership Potential
Hogan Leadership Challenges
Hogan Values & Preferences
Watson Glaser Critical Thinking
Turknett Leadership Level interview
Structured Behavioral Interview
Assessment Center may be included


Assess


Plan for Development
Create a specific developmental plan
for each high potential
Can include:
Movement to a developmental role
Cross-functional projects or teams
Stretch assignments
Mentors
Executive Coaching
Action learning projects
University programs, etc.
Inclusion in special leadership
development processes




Develop




Develop



Organization
Core
Competencies

General
Session

Knowing
Yourself
Team A
Team B
Team C
Team A
General
Session

Knowing
Others
(Teamwork)

Team B
Team C
General
Session

Leading
Effectively

Team C
Team B
Team A
General Sessions - conducted with entire group in one location. The focus is on character as the foundation of
leadership, and on Leader Level development using constructive-developmental theory, reinforcing the key
organizational messages and developing the particular critical competencies essential to successful leadership in the
organization. Senior leaders can serve as teachers or providers of content and values.
Individual Coaching - Focused on feedback and real learning and growth from assessment. Includes 360-degree
feedback, personality assessment feedback, and work on development plans, with character and level of development
as a continuing lens.
Action Learning Teams Small groups focus on projects identified as useful to the business. Teams learn about the
business and also focus on working effectively together. Results are usually presented to senior leadership.
Individual
Coaching Sessions

Individual
Coaching Sessions


Leadership
Character and
Leader Levels

Continuing Lenses
Sample Leadership Development Process
Examples
Start-up who will lead?
Professional services firm who
succeeds?
Mid-sized company little succession
management experience
Mid-sized company advanced
systems
Mid-sized Company New to succession
planning
Informal nomination of high
potentials
Assignment of mentors
Discussions with senior leaders
One-day training programs
Minimal assessment
Mid-sized Company Advanced HR
practices
Identification of high potentials
through a rigorous talent review
Extensive specification of
competencies
Complete assessment on all
competencies (360, personality
assessment, structured interviews)
Planning for each senior management
position
Tailored development plans for each
person
Some questions to be answered
Who will lead the succession planning initiative at
your organization?
How will the process be linked to strategy? What
are your core competencies?
How is management involved in succession
planning?
What are your critical positions? Key developmental
positions?
How is high potential defined?
What is your talent review process for identifying
employees with strong potential and for identifying
organization gaps? How will calibration occur?
How will high potential employees be assessed?
How will hi-pos receive developmental feedback?
How will development planning be done?
Will the process be open? Will high potentials know
they have been identified?

Additional Tool - Capability Grid
Critical Skills /Task/
Knowledge
Ready Now Ready 6-18
months
Site design
Jan S., Bill M. Susan F., Marshall
T.
Project Management
construction
Utility load forecasting
GIS
Etc.
Suggested Reading
Berger, Lance A. and Berger, Dorothy R. The Talent Management Handbook: Creating
Organizational Excellence by Identifying, Developing, and Promoting Your Best People.
Columbus, Ohio: McGraw Hill, 2003.
Berke, David. Succession Planning and Management: A Guide to Organizational Systems
and Practices. New York: Center for Creative Leadership, 2005.
Bower, Joseph L. Solve the Succession Crisis by Growing Inside-Outside Leaders,
Harvard Business Review, Nov 2007.
Byham, William C., Matthew J. Paese, and Audrey B. Smith. Grow Your Own Leaders: How
to Identify, Develop, and Retain Leadership Talent. New York: FT Press, 2002.
Charan, Ram. Ending the CEO succession crisis, Harvard Business Review, Nov 2007.
Charan, Ram, Stehpen Drotter, and James Noel. The Leadership Pipeline: How to Build the
Leadership Powered Company. New York: Jossey-Bass, 2000.
Cohn, Jeffrey, Rakesh Khurana, and Laura Reeves. Growing Talent as if Your Business
Depended On It, Harvard Business Review, October 2005.
Fulmer, Robert F. Choose Tomorrows Leaders Today: Succession Planning Grooms
Firms for Success, Graziadio Business Report , Vol. 5, Issue 1, 2002.
Karaevli, Ayse, and Hall, Douglas Tim. Growing Leadership for Turbulent Times: Is
Succession Planning up to the Challenge?, Organizational Dynamics, Vol. 32, 2003.
Krishnan, Ravi. Easing the Exodus: Innovative personnel strategies can combat the loss
of technical skills, Power Engineering, June 2006.
Ready, Douglas A. How to Grow Great Leaders. Harvard Business Review, Dec 2004.
Lyn Turknett


Carolyn (Lyn) Turknett is President
and Co-founder of Turknett
Leadership Group. She earned a BS in
mathematics and an MA in sociology,
with special emphasis in
organizational sociology, from the
University of Georgia. Her specialty is
organizational assessment and
change, executive team development,
and ethical leadership in rapidly
changing environments. Lyn is an
active member of several professional
associations, including the Society for
Human Resource Management, and is
an active community volunteer. She
serves on the board of United Way of
Metropolitan Atlanta, is an elder in the
Presbyterian Church, and enjoys
grandmothering in any spare time.
Bob Turknett

Dr. Robert (Bob) Turknett is the CEO and
co-founder of Turknett Leadership
Group, a 22 year-old consulting firm
specializing in succession planning, CEO
consulting, executive development,
talent management and organization
effectiveness. Best known for their work
in character-based leadership, Bob and
Lyn Turknett are co-authors of Decent
People Decent Company," creators of the
Leadership Character Model, and hosts
of the annual Leadership Character
Awards. Along with a staff of business
and IO psychologists, they help
companies build cultures of character
and accountability and prepare for long-
term success. Bob is a member of
Atlanta Rotary, a strong supporter of
United Way, an avid golfer, and the
proud grandfather of Jules and Tucker.