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Succession Planning for Leaders

Succession planning in recent years has become recognised by most successful, global businesses as the key element in their people resourcing strategies. This is because they know that they cannot afford to leave the recruitment of their future leadership to chance. This is usually the case when a business is largely dependent on external recruitment methods. The so -called global ‘war for talent’ means that there is now genuine competitive advantage for businesses that identify and nurture high potential talent from within. Research suggests successors nurtured in this way are, on average, likely to be between 2 and 6 times more successful than external hires. Without addressing this issue, growing businesses usually find that their growth will be eventually seriously negatively affected.

Turning 'Theory' into 'Practice'?

The whole point of the course is that when delegates return to work that they should be able to be able to take the lead or at least strongly influence the design and implementation of their company’s succession management programme. This means that there is very little theory involved in the course partly because very little theory exists about the subject matter. So most of the content is largely based on real, ’best practice’ case studies and the deep experience and knowledge of the facilitator in helping a wide range of organisations to design and implement their own schemes. The clear aim is for delegates return with a practical action plan that can be quickly agreed and implemented.

Who should attend?

Key areas to be covered in the programme and documentation

What is succession planning?
• Understanding the strategic nature of succession planning (SP)
• Succession planning as a part of the business plan
• How the emphasis has changed from a purely ‘planning’ activity
to a development activity
• Example business plan to be used in a group exercise to identify their
business’s SP requirements
Exercise - Getting delegates to share what they think their
company’s SP requirements and needs are

The key elements of succession planning:
• Identifying high potential people (‘bench strength’)
• Forming talent pools
• Identifying key current and future positions to be filled
• Assessment techniques
• Recruitment policies
• Coaching and mentoring
Exercise/discussion – Sharing which elements you have in place
and which elements you still need to introduce

Why is SP So critically Important to today’s successful businesses?
• Today’s a fierce ‘war for talent’ on a global scale
• No single formula for success - Each company’s SP design is unique
• What does research on SP tell us?
• Why have so many businesses not invested in SP yet?
• The benefits of implementing the succession planning
Group discussion - Why it is so challenging to recruit the right, top talent today

How to design and implement Succession Planning

• Stage 1–
Clarifying your business strategy and aligning your SP to create
the talent to achieve it.  Starting with the ‘big picture’ and gradually, throughout the rest of
the course, ’drilling into the detail’
Case study: A real business strategy case study for delegates to
analyse and suggest what its SP requirements are – creating an overall
list of agreed requirements

• Stage 2 – Engaging with your senior leadership team (SLT)
– C larity about the three objectives of doing this
– Understanding that without the SLT commitment the SP
programme will fail
Exercise - Using the Nine Box Grid (NBG) to facilitate the SLT decision
making process to make the initial selection of candidates for the new
talent pool

• Stage 3 – Defining the critical competencies required to undertake the key
roles successfully
– The need for robust, objective and consistent set of performance
criteria or competencies
Case study - Understanding the basics of developing a leadership
competency framework

• Stage 4
– Candidate assessment using competency based criteria
– After the NBG, there is a need to assess candidates objectively via the use
of multiple assessment techniques
Case study example - A real, competency based, 360 degrees review
process used to provide stand alone, individual feedback or feedback
in a Development Centre

• Stage 5 – Building and developing the talent pool
– The shift from succession planning to succession management over
the last 10 years
– Creating individual personal development plans (PDP’s) that act
as a route map
– Guiding and providing clear objectives for each candidate’s learning
process as members of the talent pool
– The use of secondments and temporary projects within the
business providing candidates with new and powerful company
learning experiences
– What’s the most important development activity of all?
Exercise - Identifying current, suitable, potential secondment and
temporary project opportunities within your own business

Creating Your Own Succession Plan
• Action learning exercise to apply what’s been learnt - creating a ‘first draft’,
SP action plan to present back to the business after the course
• How to put everything learnt into practice back at work to either create
a new SP or improve an existing one
Case study exercise - Identifying the potential strengths and
weaknesses of the project

Presentation of SP Action Plans
• Individual presentations back to the group to validate and receive feedback
on their plans
• Feedback should be considered by each delegate and if necessary used
to change or modify their plan
Q&A session

Benefits to you

• Providing the business with competitive advantage by positioning the succession planning as a key element in your company’s business strategy
• Exploring the essential stages of succession planning and the sequence in which they must be delivered within the organisation
• Acquiring effective succession planning tools and processes
• Analysing your current situation with succession planning and filling the gaps using the most important succession planning techniques
• Learning from best practices how to assess potential and forming talent pools
• Evaluating the value of the most commonly used learning strategies for developing high potential people: development centers, corporate projects, peer group assignments, secondments to other parts of the business, coaching and mentoring, ‘shadowing’ senior executive colleagues, leadership master classes and taking on specially designed, “acting up” roles
• Exploring methods in assessing the effectiveness of succession programmes
• Constructing your own ‘first draft’, action plans that will include an outline design of your business’s succession programme along with the key steps that will be involved in implementing it

Companies already benefiting include:

Duration of Course

2 Day Course

Course details

23rd & 24th of April 2018, London, UK, PT3713

Looking to train larger teams in this subject?

dzingim@marcusevansuk.comTailored in-house/in-company training courses and bespoke strategy workshops designed and delivered on-site throughout Europe according to your specific requirements.

All management, personal development and project management public courses featured in our Course Directory are also delivered on an In-Company basis.

Click Here for information on how this course can be delivered for you as an In-Company Training Solution


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"This course will allow my company to develop its existing strategies to a much greater and hopefully profitable level."

Managing Director, Tarmac