As baby boomers near retirement age, it’s no secret many of today’s leaders will be exiting their firms over the next five to ten years. Despite this reality, less than ten percent of sole proprietors have a continuation agreement in place and fewer than half of multi-owner firms have succession plans in place according to the latest PCPS CPA Firm Succession Survey.
Bottom line, it is more critical than ever for existing leaders to prepare the next generation for this important transition. Is your firm ready for a leadership handoff?
Three tips to help your firm get started:
1. Redefine the Leadership Role
Leadership roles are not important to many up and comers as they seek greater freedom and better work/life balance. Maybe it’s time to rethink the leadership role in your firm.
- How can we redefine the leadership role?
- How can we use this opportunity to reengage our workforce?
- How can we incorporate a better work/life balance?
2. Work to Engage Everyone
With employee engagement at all-time lows, many who might be tapped as emerging leaders or rising stars could be hidden in the sea of disengagement.
- Replace ‘one size fits all’ approaches with individualized plans for success
- Help ensure each person is clear on their responsibilities and how these align with firm goals
- Check-in with them regularly - offer assistance and trouble-shooting as needed
3. Equip Leaders and Rising Stars with Training and Coaching
Future success requires proactive participation from firm leaders
- How is our firm equipping emerging leaders to take the reins?
- Do our firm leaders provide mentoring and coaching to emerging leaders and rising stars?
- Does our firm help emerging leaders craft personal development plans focused on individual strengths and needs?