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Filling the Gap When a Leader Retires — Au Revoir Lisa
Wednesday, September 4, 2019 9:00 AM
While the retirement of a valued long-term employee is undoubtedly a time of great change, it can also be an opportunity to groom new leaders. Proper business planning can provide a smooth, orderly succession of leadership across your organization and preserve decades’ worth of knowledge and skills amid an impending departure.
Having a successful exit strategy in place hits particularly close to home for the BSM Consulting work family. Recently, Lisa Peltier retired after 32 years of dedicated service to BSM. Lisa has served a crucial role for Founder and CEO Bruce Maller since 1987, assisting him on countless client projects. Her natural leadership abilities, extensive industry knowledge, and compassion for others has set the tone for the organization, helping to make it successful throughout the years.
Those who know Lisa will also be aware that she has bravely faced some significant health challenges over the past few years. After a lifetime of wonderful service to BSM and our clients, her decision to step away from her work responsibilities allows her to focus on herself and her family.
“Please join us in thanking Lisa from the bottom of our big hearts for her incredible service to BSM,” said Bruce and BSM President Judy Williams in a joint company announcement. “We would not be where we are today without her and everything she has done to help the team build the business.”
Lisa said she is equally appreciative to the company and its employees for all the “love and support” they have provided her over the years, including the lead-up to her retirement.
“My decision to retire was difficult; however, in many ways, I found it easy,” Lisa said. “That’s because we have an incredible and talented team who does an exceptional job every day to deliver high-quality work and provide terrific service to our customers!”
Behind the scenes, the BSM Leadership Team has been working to prepare for this day for several years. This preparation, which includes Lisa’s thoughtful training and mentoring of our next generation of talented team members, is already going a long way to fill the big gap Lisa leaves behind, though nothing will replace her friendly face around the office.
If your organization is facing a similar leadership transition, consider these effective planning tips:
Develop a succession plan. Create a strategic plan that identifies top company talent and outlines how to further develop them so they can later be deployed when and where needed.
Devote proper time and resources. Be proactive and devote the appropriate time and resources needed to anticipate and plan for leadership transitions. You will be better prepared when an expected or unexpected transition occurs.
Cross-train employees. Team members should be exposed to the processes, duties, and responsibilities of their colleagues. The more knowledge your employees have about other company positions, the easier for them to fill a vacant role.
Offer mentorship. Provide team leaders sufficient time to pass down their knowledge and know-how to appropriate staff so your next generation of key players are ready and able to step in when needed.
Do a trial run. Have a successor assume the responsibilities of the outgoing leader when he or she is on vacation or in off-site meetings to gauge how prepared the successor is to take on the role.
Please join us in wishing Lisa the very best as she embarks on this exciting next chapter of her life! She will never be far from her work family’s minds and hearts. Don’t be a stranger — she’d love to hear from her dear industry friends and colleagues — so please reach out to her through her personal email: firstname.lastname@example.org.