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Succession Planning

Succession planning is about more than identifying your next executive director or planning for an emergency departure. It is an opportunity to plan for the organization’s future with the Board and the CEO. Succession planning ensures that you identify and develop future leaders to meet the goals of your strategic plan, increase the probability of internal succession, and provide sustainability through a leadership transition.

Our consultants have experience in all three types of succession planning:

As a component of the strategic plan or annual planning process, identifying the talent and leadership needed to achieve the organization’s long-term goals, as well as providing tactics for developing internal leaders.

Departure-defined, preparing a plan for anticipated change in executive leadership that creates a platform for a new leader’s success and conveys organizational strength throughout transition.

Emergency succession planning, readying the organization to handle an unanticipated change in leadership, either temporary or permanent, with tactics for preparing temporary leaders.

In addition, our succession planning practice can help the organizational leader and board of directors:

  • Learn about succession planning by facilitating an exploratory session for board members and key leadership.
  • Create leadership pathways for staff, helping retain future leaders and meet needs dictated by your strategic plan.
  • Map scenarios and options for strengthening the organization in anticipation of planned executive departures that assure stability during transition, as well as long-term success.
  • Plan and articulate policies,interim roles, responsibilities, and timelines for leadership in an emergency.
  • Identify key executive competencies needed in an interim or successor candidate.
  • Plan for executive search and onboarding, including options, processes, and costs.
  • Develop a communications plan that engenders confidence among staff, the public, and key stakeholders during a planned or unplanned leadership change.


Contact us

To learn more about how GCN's Nonprofit Consulting Group can help you develop leadership strength and prepare for planned or unplanned transitions, contact us at [email protected] or 678.916.3082.