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Choosing the right successor for your business 

On Behalf of | May 23, 2024 | Business law |

You may have spent many years establishing your business. Thus, it is very important to you. Nonetheless, the reality is that you will not be able to be at the helm forever. You may need to step down in an emergency scenario or simply walk away once you reach retirement age. This is where a succession plan comes in. 

Choosing someone to take over your role as head of the company isn’t an easy decision, and it is one that requires careful consideration. How do you choose the right successor for your business? 

Skills to consider

Some of the skills that your successor needs may depend on the type of business that you conduct. For example, they may need to possess in-depth knowledge of the unique product or service that you offer. 

However, some more general skills make someone a good successor. For example, anyone taking on an ownership or higher management role should:

  • Show leadership skills
  • Recognize talent
  • Be familiar with employment laws
  • Be financially prudent 

If you find someone with most of these skills then there is a good chance that they are the right person for the job. 

Personal characteristics 

Business acumen and financial management are vitally important, but personal characteristics should also be considered. An ideal successor will: 

  • Be good with people
  • Be determined for the business to prosper 
  • Be trustworthy and dependable 

Personal characteristics such as drive and work ethic cannot be understated, as there are times when running a business gets tough. 

A family member or outside hire

There are advantages and drawbacks of choosing a family member to take over. You’ll likely have a high level of trust in them, but they may lack some of the business acumen required for the role. At the same time, an outside hire may have all the relevant business experience and skills, but it takes time to get to know a person and trust them. At the end of the day, you should go with the option you feel most comfortable with. 

Seeking legal guidance will help you to get your succession plan off the ground.