Overseeing the nurturing, retention and motivation of a small group of individuals, who feature predominantly in the CEO succession plan, is a Board-level responsibility.
This top tier of individuals – destined to be the leaders of the future – has to be stretched with increasingly demanding assignments to assess their suitability for expanded roles and main Board responsibilities.
CEOs or CEO succession candidates
The CEO succession mentoring programme enables internal candidates to anticipate how to manage behavioural, personal and social-interaction issues associated with being the CEO more effectively before taking up the role.
Our CMi programme usually has two principal objectives – how to succeed in the current role, while also being prepared for the next
The Board has the responsibility to ensure the company has the best possible CEO. Preparing of internal “ready to go” candidates is essential to ensure smooth transitions – investors don’t like surprises from unprepared Boards.
• Board relationships • business strategy • leadership style • investors • shareholders • analysts • regulators • the media
For the internal succession candidate, relationships with former peers and colleagues are transformed and the responsibility of company-wide decisions weighs heavily. This is a pivotal stage in a leader’s career and can have a significant impact on the fortunes of the company and its share price.
Interview with Sir Roger Carr, Chairman of BAE Systems plc on the importance of succession planning.
Our mentors are Chairs who have overseen numerous CEO succession processes and are acutely aware of what the Board, investors and the market require in a successful CEO. As many of CMi’s Chairs have been CEOs, they also understand the immense operational and personal pressure a candidate is under.
Developing strong internal CEO succession candidates that are ready for this new challenge is both the responsibility and the legacy of the Chair and the incumbent CEO. Mentoring complements a well-managed transition process by assisting each candidate to best prepare and understand what the CEO role encompasses and involves. It also provides opportunities to solicit a confidential second opinion with a neutral, seasoned former Chief Executive on key issues that are likely to be encountered in the new role.
"Honest mentoring is the best possible gift for CEOs".
Jean-Christophe Tellier CEO, UCB SA and CMi mentee
The CEO succession mentoring process remains completely confidential throughout – this is absolutely essential in order to be fully effective. Once appointed, the new CEO continues the relationship with the mentors during the early stages of their new tenure. When the CEO is established they will often request a new mentor to provide a different perspective.