Let’s say you were there when the agency first opened its doors. You love the mission, the people and the patients. You plan to stay where you are until you are ready to retire. So, you haven’t made succession planning part of your strategic plan because it’s so far into the future. Well, the time is now to consider it and anticipate the unexpected. Your staff and agency will thank you.
Why Make It Part Of Strategic Planning:
Be open with your staff. The point of the strategic plan is to address current issues and prepare for others. So, it only makes sense to prepare for a loss. Whether a spouse’s job causes you to move or an illness takes you out of commission, your agency should have a plan in place. You also need to consider that your dedication may not be the same in the future as it is at this moment. Staff situations change and you are cognizant of that all along the way. If you don’t look at it that way for yourself, then you aren’t doing your agency any favors. Let’s consider the steps to planning for a potential loss in leadership.
- Consider all department heads: The overall focus of this article is loss of an administrative role, but the planning rings true for any key position. For example, what happens tomorrow of the employee who does aide training for your regional agency leaves? What’s your back-up plan? Are you going to be forced to throw something into place without properly vetting the solution? This includes all key positions including yours.
- Cross-training: There are countless agencies where we have seen one person hold the key to certain things within the agency. So, once they leave, the agency is scrambling to put the pieces together. Your agency should never be in this position.
- Consider interim management: Interim management puts you in touch with leadership that can fill into the vacant role. With years and often multiple decades running agencies, they have the knowledge and expertise to run your agency while helping search, interview, and train a replacement.
- Research interim management: Consider the skill-set of the players around administration. Would you need a full time interim 5 days per week? Would you need 3-4 days per week? What are the main focus items for your interim? These should be re-evaluated on a yearly basis. For example, one year the focus would have been putting the new COPs into place while the next would have been the Review Choice demonstration for some. Then, here comes PDGM and a pandemic. Ultimately, the point is to consider what would be the issues for an administrator for that year. It could be something internal within your agency or something industry-wide. Research different companies providing the services. Consider the skill-set you need and have them send you bios on current interim staff. Beginning the conversation allows you to be way ahead should the position present itself.
Again, the important part of this is the transparency with your staff. Your other department heads should know the reason behind looking for potential interim management in case there is a change. Ultimately, reassure them of your dedication and intentions to stay long term, but also inform them of your responsibility to prepare the agency for anything untimely.
Research Your Interim Options With Kenyon:
At Kenyon Homecare Consulting, we have provided interim management services across the country. We have a wide range of experiences in our senior level interim managers and can help you meet your needs. Call us today at 206-721-5091 or contact us online to see how we can help you meet your interim management needs. Join us on May 5th, 2021 for our free interim management webinar at 10am PST. Register for free to attend If You Lose Your Leader Tomorrow, What Will You Do?