The first step in any succession planning process is to identify which roles in your organization should be targeted through the succession program. Often, this is easier said than done. Many companies today don’t keep organizational charts and position descriptions on-hand and up-to-date, making it difficult to identify weak links in the leadership pipeline.

To help you understand the critical roles in your organization and focus your succession efforts, we’ve developed the At-A-Glance Org Chart.

at-a-glance org chart

The Goal

This worksheet is intended to help you identify which roles your organization needs to prioritize in the succession planning process.

The Advantage

Using the At-A-Glance Org Chart will allow your organization to streamline your succession planning efforts. Prioritizing succession plans by role also ensures that you target positions at risk of vacancy first.

The Steps

The At-A-Glance Org Chart should be filled out by the incumbent for each critical role in your organization. Critical roles are those roles that are essential to the day-to-day operation of your business. They often include executives and leaders but may extend to lower-level employees. In many organizations, lynchpin roles include administrative roles and any position with critical technical expertise. For more information on identifying critical roles in succession planning, click here.

Once you identify the critical roles in your organization, have each incumbent complete the sheet with the following instructions. Use one worksheet per critical role.

  1. List their position and name in the top box of each At-A-Glance Org Chart
  2. List potential candidates for the role, including direct reports, high potential employees from other teams, or any employee with the potential to be a good successor for the role
  3. Rate each potential candidate on:
  • Readiness for Position – How long (in years) would it take to prepare this employee to step into your role?
  • Planning to Remain – How long (in years) is the employee planning to remain with the organization or in that particular role? Note: When evaluating an employees’ plan to remain, consider their eligibility to retire as well as the potential risk that they will seek opportunities elsewhere.
  • Replacement Readiness – How long (in years) would it take to find or groom a successor for this role should the current employee leave or be promoted?  

If you are the CEO or another executive level employee in the organization, an easy way to start this process is by filling out the At-A-Glance Org Chart yourself. Your potential candidates will likely be other critical leaders in the organization’s management team. These people should then fill out a worksheet themselves to ensure that the succession planning process is scaled across multiple teams and levels of the organization.

Looking for More?

If you’re interested in learning more about SIGMA’s succession planning process and how we can help you implement it at your organization, take a look at our succession planning services. We offer everything from workshops and webinars to full-scale succession planning consultation.

Want to do it yourself? Check out our Succession Planning Certification Workshop where we teach you everything you need to know about our six-stage Succession Planning Process so that you can scale it across your organization.

Need a bit more help? Take a look at SIGMA’s Launch Series, where we deliver a custom 12-month succession plan for each leader in your organization in just 4-6 weeks, requiring only two half-day commitments from your management team.

Contact us bellow if you have questions or would like to speak with an executive coach on how SIGMA can best help you.