Best Practices

Six Succession Planning Strategies for Marketers

Veronica Malloy, A-LIGN


As the demographics of leaders in today’s organizations continue to evolve, we place our focus on the Baby Boomer generation and the need for succession planning. It is critical that firms have both short-term and long-term organizational plans to address leadership development and tactical hiring, and marketing can play a significant role in enhancing the firm’s public image, communication, and training to help position the firm for future success.


Below are six strategies for marketers to tackle when planning for succession.


1.       Build brand visibility. As the firm begins to search for a successor, marketing’s main role should be to increase brand awareness and gain visibility in the marketplace. Positioning the firm as a great place to work and highlighting growth and innovation as key focal points will help attract the talent needed to fill the skills and capabilities of predecessors.


2.       Reassess client needs. As the firm focuses its attention on talent acquisition, it is imperative that clients’ needs are being met. These needs will change over time and will occur during the transition of leadership. Marketers should assist in creating a strategic plan for firm leaders to reassess client requirements and discuss the plan for internal succession.


3.       Create an environment of transparency. During this stage of succession planning, it is important that employees remain positive and motivated. Marketers should work closely with human resources and firm leadership to determine the best approach when communicating the future of the firm, as well as roles that might need to be filled. Fostering a culture of internal development and promotion will increase engagement and excitement within the firm.


4.       Streamline the communication process. Effective communication is a vital part of any organization’s success. It can enhance the productivity, morale, and commitment of employees and clients, which is why marketers should have an internal and external communication strategy to communicate the succession plan.


5.       Document all processes and procedures. As the change in job roles begins, it is a best practice to create policies and procedures that outline the responsibilities of each position. Marketing can assist in ensuring every process is documented and recorded to make sure those responsibilities can be conducted again by new hires.


6.       Assist next generation leaders in building their personal brand. Marketers can assist in developing the next-in-line leaders of the firm by enhancing their personal brand and increasing their visibility in the community. Marketers should conduct public relations activities to promote these leaders to the public, highlighting their skills and expertise through speaking engagements and media coverage.


Retirement is inevitable and great leaders will come and go, but its important that every organization has a solid foundation to continue growing the firm through adversity. Marketing plays a vital role in building this foundation through goal-oriented strategies, focused on lead and revenue generation. The six strategies above can help guide marketers in facilitating and communicating the succession plan both internally and externally, to position the firm for long-lasting growth.


Want to learn more about the marker’s role in succession planning? This article from the CPA Growth Trends blog shares insight from top industry experts.