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succession planning in an organization

Please help me with these questions:

Week 4 Question 1

What is succession planning in an organization? What has been your experience with succession planning in the organizations you've worked for? For those of you who have had limited exposure to succession planning, what could HR do to create a great succession plan? Be sure to include at least one outside peer-reviewed reference.

Week 4 Question 2

How difficult is it to get 'high performance' from an organization's employees? Do you feel that most organizations have success obtaining high performance from their employees? Please support your substantive rationale with at least two outside references.

Week 4 Question 3

As HR professionals, what would you conclude are three key elements to a successful organizational training program? Please provide a thorough and substantive explanation for your answer, citing outside references for greater depth and clarity.

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Week 4 Question 1

What is succession planning in an organization?
Succession planning refers to identifying and preparing suitable workers through a systematic process of training, job rotation and counseling, for replacing pivotal executives within the company as these executives age and leave the company. In short, succession planning refers to a planned process of recognition and training to substitute important and influential persons when they leave the company. If there is an excellent succession planning in place it will ensure that the organization remains effective even when key people retire and leave the organization.
What has been your experience with succession planning in the organizations you've worked for?
My experience with succession planning in the organization, I've worked for is mixed. There were two positions for which I observed succession planning. One was the post of the CFO. There were two candidates that were groomed for replacing the CFO when he left the company. One was a candidate that had corporate finance background and the other hand information systems/auditing background. Each candidate was rotated on every possible finance or accounting position in the company. Each was posted on finance and related positions abroad. Each had a mentor and they were provided excellent training in leadership, interpersonal interaction and core financial management. The candidates were ready for the post of CFO. The CFO retired on his due date of superannuation and the candidate with the financial background took over. This was a satisfactory case of succession planning.
In the second case of succession planning, there were two candidates groomed for the position of the CEO. One was from the marketing department and the second was from production. Each was assigned to a mentor and they were placed in different positions in different departments of the company. They were given extensive training in strategic planning, leadership and management. However, on the day the CEO was supposed to retire, the managed to get an extension for another four years. The two candidates seemed frustrated; the candidate with the marketing/sales ...

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