Executive transition – the process of managing the departure of one leader and finding the next – has inherent risks, depending on the organization’s stability. The most salient risk, of course, is hiring the wrong next leader, which can threaten the organization’s viability. Boards often experience anxiety about the executive director’s departure, which can trigger a hasty decision – often a reflexive instinct to hire the same type of leader as before – a backward move rather than a step forward.
Support Center’s approach is to build the organization’s capacity through the transition process to position it for long-term sustainability and success. We work with organizations on succession planning, to ensure leadership continuity, and help place interim executive directors when the need arises. Through our executive search work we get to know your organization, its culture, and its community, so the search and recruitment process is based on a true understanding of your organization’s needs.
After the new leader is hired, we follow up with intensive on-boarding support, designed to align the executive director’s plans and the board’s wishes and expectations. When managed in this fashion, executive transition is fundamentally less risky and substantially more beneficial to an organization’s long-term health.