We’re Leaves On A Vine

Think of the leaves on a vine as they grow up the side of a building. They’re beautiful. They blossom, they grow, and eventually, your entire building is covered with them. As the autumn season approaches, one by one, they start to turn colors. Some yellow, some red, some brown. So many leaves to admire, and every time we look at them, we think of the beauty they bring. Then they start to fall off. Until only a few are left. What will replace them? Naturally, new leaves blossom and grow in their place. They start out small, and then repeat the cycle.

We’ve hit a major turning point in business. For years, Baby Boomers have been sitting around our executive table. Bringing expertise and years of experience; and trying to plan for and lead the company into the future. And now, they’re retiring. What will replace those leaves in your company? They won’t stay forever; we all know that. It’s inevitable. Don’t end up with an empty vine.

More and more Millennials are entering the workforce every single day. And Gen Xers have been in our businesses for a while now. But it seems over the past few years, the younger generations have gained a stigma that’s not exactly flattering. “They don’t want to work; they want the easy way out; all they do is change things.” But it’s time we stop fighting the inevitable. Because these people we’re resisting are the same people who are going to lead our companies and our country into the future. They’re the same people who will one day fill our executive tables.

Have you identified your successor? And if not, why? Whether you’re planning to retire a year from now or ten plus years from now, you have to be grooming those that will follow you. It’s time to clue people in on what’s inside your head. It’s time to provide learning opportunities for those you lead. It’s time to get out of the habit of “the way we do things.”

We know it’s scary. We know you might be hesitant. What if they mess up? What if they don’t do things the way you do them? What if they change everything? But the question you should be asking is this: What is going to happen if you don’t train a successor?

Your team is craving development. Are you feeding them? Are you helping them grow? Just a little food for thought…

For more in-depth information to create a succession plan, download our free guide: 5 ½ Critical Steps to Building Successful Succession Plans.

Get My Free Guide