Most people like to feel like they fill an important role at work, but the average employee is more or less replaceable. Even managers and team leaders could have someone else step into their position with just a day or two of training.
The same isn’t always true of highly skilled positions and executive roles. The more crucial a position is for the daily operations of a business, the more important it is to have a succession plan for that position.
What is the purpose of a succession plan?
A succession plan is a detailed document including all of the special information about a job that only the person who does it knows. A succession plan might include daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual job responsibilities. It might include information about accounts or passwords.
It should include all the details that are important to the daily functions of that professional that aren’t part of any official training materials. The idea is to have someone pick up the document and be able to perform the job without much outside help or lag in productivity.
Who really needs to create a succession plan?
Typically, only those with access to sensitive information that they don’t share with others and those whose roles are important to the daily operations will need a succession plan.
Typically, executives need to make such a plan, although occasionally high-ranking managers or business owners may also need to make a succession plan. Those who work in research and development may also need a plan or at least a document recording unshared information about their position and progress.
Including a requirement for succession planning in your contracts with your executive-level or keystone employees can help ensure that your company doesn’t experience a major disruption as if a worker leaves unexpectedly.