Leadership Planning Addresses Gaps in Talent Pool

According to Pew Research, an average of 10,000 people will turn 65 years old every day for the next 11 years. While that is a sobering statistic, it has actually been occurring since Jan. 1, 2011, when the first group of baby boomers reached 65.2

Meanwhile, younger generations are sweeping into the workforce in greater numbers than ever before. Having surpassed baby boomers as the nation’s largest living generation, millennials will eventually make up 75 percent3 of the total workforce over the next 10 years. Generation Z, the generation following millennials, is estimated to be even larger, according to Bloomberg.4

Ironically, with this shift in employment priorities on the horizon, organizations in all sectors are struggling with succession planning—the ability to attract and retain the next generation of leadership. Drawing and retaining valuable talent is imperative to the growth and health of any organization. While it is now commonplace for some employers to go to great lengths to appeal to new talent, companies with stricter budgets must explore other options.

What is succession planning?

Succession planning is defined as a long-term strategy to ensure the continued effective performance of an organization, division, department or work group by making provisions for the development, replacement and strategic application of key people over time.

Geared toward developing the internal bench strength of an organization, succession planning is usually part of a larger talent management program that attracts the best people through recruitment, keeps them through effective retention practices and develops them through well-targeted talent development efforts.

Succession planning should not be confused with replacement planning, which identifies one or two individuals who are ready and able to replace a person (normally in leadership) on short notice, such as in an emergency. Typically, this replacement is temporary. A replacement plan is a tactical, stop-gap measure, but it is not the same as a long-term and continual solution like succession planning.