Many financial advisors resist developing a succession plan because of our individual (and societal) reluctance to deal with death and disability. It’s easier to say you’ll deal with these issues “later” than to confront them head-on. But making decisions about the future will create greater serenity and security for yourself, your family, your employees, and your clients.
You may need a network of support to coach you on how to tackle these issues. As a business coaching professional with expertise in this area, I would offer these tips:
1. Take time to clarify where you want to go with your business, and sort out which of the options makes send for you. Communicate your plans as early as possible to your staff. Get together with each employee to explore what they want to achieve at the firm, so you can see how they might successfully weather this transition.
2. Validate and appreciate your staff in word and deed, and help them find a role that uses their skills and talents well.
3. If it’s feasible, consider “trying on” a succession plan during a transitional period when the process can be tweaked. For example, you might give a promising insider an opportunity to run things while you take a long vacation.