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Does your Association have a succession plan?

Without a detailed succession plan, your association could lose continuity of institutional knowledge and business direction as Board members retire or leave. Without a smooth transition from Board to Board there is likely to be a disruption to operations and could ultimately leave your association in a troubling situation.

What is Succession Planning? Succession Planning is a process in which individuals are identified and/or developed to potentially fill senior leadership and management positions as well as other critical business positions.

As a board, how do you develop a succession plan strategy?

Below we have outlined several key steps to assist boards and committees in managing succession.

  1. Plan a conscious handover that outlines the process that boards and committees must follow when replacing board members or directors. This should include;
    • An emergency departure process
    • A planned departure process
  2. Establish a timeline (i.e next AGM/end of Term appointments etc) Provide adequate lead time for preparation and consider seasonality implications (December shut down, membership renewals etc)
  3. Define the onboarding process and have guidelines in place which will enable new board members to transition smoothly. Include the finance and basic operations of the association. This could include having new Board members included in executive meetings up to 12 months prior to their official appointment, depending on the role.
  4. Commence the recruitment program
    • Ensure any documentation is available for any potential board member
    • Approach suitable members and engage with them.
  5. Review annually – your succession planning should be reviewed annually to ensure the policy reflects the growth and direction of the association.

If you need assistance in developing a Board Succession Plan, please contact TAS. You can also watch our Succession Planning webinar replay here: