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The Official Baldrige Blog

Top Tips for Preparing Tomorrow’s Leaders

Four people at work in large building looking out at their future in the city skyline.
Credit: alphaspirit/Shutterstock

 With more and more Baby Boomers quickly reaching retirement age, the Forbes Coaches Council recently released its top tips for preparing the next generation of leaders. Its number one tip: plan ahead.

The council’s guidance aligns with succession planning in the Baldrige Excellence Framework, which probes how an organization manages career progression for its workforce and future leaders. The framework also highlights the role of senior leaders in participating in organizational learning, the development of future leaders, succession planning, and recognition opportunities and events that celebrate the workforce. Succession planning in the Baldrige framework is important enough to be part of the core value “Focus on Success,” which includes developing leaders, workforce, and suppliers; and accomplishing effective succession planning. Effective governance processes also include succession planning.

The Forbes Coaches Council offers 13 tips regarding succession planning:

  1. Don't Wait to Start
  2. Develop a Buy-and-Build Strategy
  3. Train Senior Leaders How to Effectively Coach and Mentor
  4. Encourage Collaboration
  5. Leverage the Success of Mentoring
  6. Cultivate Multi-Generational Training Programs
  7. Use Sustainable Leadership Programs at all Tiers
  8. Identify and Develop Needed Skills and Competencies
  9. Handle Your Succession Plan Execution with Respect
  10. Create Opportunities for Emerging Leaders to Take the Lead
  11. Find New Carrots
  12. Offer Access to Stand-Alone Courses or Tuition Assistance
  13. Remember to Delegate

Some places to find examples of effective succession planning by Baldrige Award recipients are in their award application summaries, especially in the item of 5.2b(3) Career Progression.

Is your organization planning ahead for tomorrow’s leaders?

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Baldrige Excellence Framework

The Baldrige Excellence Framework has empowered organizations to accomplish their missions, improve results, and become more competitive. It includes the Criteria for Performance Excellence, core values and concepts, and guidelines for evaluating your processes and results.

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About the author

Dawn Bailey

Dawn Bailey is a writer/editor for the Baldrige Program and involved in all aspects of communications, from leading the Baldrige Executive Fellows program to managing the direction of case studies, social media efforts, and assessment teams. She has more than 25 years of experience, 18 years at the Baldrige Program. Her background is in English and journalism, with degrees from the University of Connecticut and an advanced degree from George Mason University.

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