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What the Zimbabwean election can teach you about succession planning

by , 31 July 2013
You can hardly expect to get wise lessons in leadership from certified crackpot like Robert Mugabe. But did you know there are some surprising lessons about succession planning hidden in the 2013 Zimbabwean election? Read on to find out what they are...

Robert Mugabe is fighting to stick around as president of Zimbabwe for another term, reports The Washington Post. What lessons can your business learn from the Zimbabwean election?  Read on to find out…

Don't let your business revolve around a single key figure

Yes your business may have a charismatic leader or a genius developer, but guess what? They're not going to be around forever. Even Robert Mugabe, with his 38 year run as president, will have to give up the title someday – maybe soon.

The Practical Guide to Human Resources Management says you need to have a succession plan in place for every key figure in your business. Whether it's a talented leader or an employee with rare skills, you must safeguard their position. You can't put all your eggs in one basket. And gone are the days when people stay at one company for ten or 20 years! You must plan for the eventuality that people will leave or retire from your business.

Don't let a succession battle cripple your business

If you don't have a succession plan in place, your employees will start a succession battle the second a coveted vacancy opens up. Much like the in-fighting in Zimbabwean government, a succession battle can cut into your bottom line by lowering productivity.

By putting a succession plan in place, you eliminate the guesswork your employees will fight over. When there is one clear successor, and management recognises that successor, other contenders can fall away gracefully.

A succession plan can ensure that transitions in your business won't be as tense as the Zimbabwean elections.

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