Succession Planning Succession planning permits organizations to identify and develop internal personnel who have the potential to fill key or critical organizational positions. Library directors should be actively involved in this process so that talented employees are mentored and receive training and opportunities to help them flourish. The “Succession Planning Check List for the Chief Executive” was prepared by the United Way of King County. The current library director can be extremely helpful to the board by providing answers to the questions and comments on the check list. Rothwell, William J. Effective Succession Planning: Ensuring Leadership Continuity and Building Talent from Within. 4th ed. New York: AMACOM, American Management Association, 2010. Available through Access Pennsylvania Database. Topics include case studies, trends, use of competencies and values, change management, internal and external resources and much more. The table of contents and an overview are available on the publisher’s website. Marshall Goldsmith, the CEO of an executive coaching firm, posted his thoughts about succession planning on Facebook. He writes: “Plans do not develop anyone — only development experiences develop people.” If you are just beginning to think about succession planning, then look at the slides from Nina Malyshev from Giving Voice Consulting who presented a program at the Public Library Association Conference, March 2010, “Cultivating Tomorrow’s Leaders Today: The Discipline of Succession Planning.” The Department of Justice Libraries’ Libraries Succession Plan: Findings and Recommendations was developed by an internal committee. Although the components may be a bit more sophisticated than the needs of many public libraries, many aspects of their report can be adapted for smaller public libraries. The federal government’s Office of Personnel Management developed a “Workforce Planning Model,” a tool that the library director and board will find helpful for succession planning. “Workforce planning is the systematic process for identifying and addressing the gaps between the workforce of today and the human capital needs of tomorrow. “ The U.S. General Services Administration Office of Governmentwide Policy prepared Succession Planning Guide in 2001. Note especially the sections on generic skill sets and competencies on p. S6. Singer, Paula with Gail Griffin. Succession Planning in the Library: Developing Leaders, Managing Change. Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 2010.
Available through Access Pennsylvania Database. The table of contents, an overview and an excerpt are available on the publisher’s website. Nixon, Judith M. "Growing Your Own Leaders: Succession Planning in Libraries." Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship 13, no. 3 (March 2008): 249-260. Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts, EBSCOhost (accessed March 6, 2010). Only the abstract is available here, but it is helpful is identifying the problem and recommends “growing your own.” Periodical available through Access Pennsylvania Database for full text.
Gordon, Rachel Singer, “Nuturing New Leaders by Demonstrating Quality Leadership.” Journal of the Library Administration and Management Section of the New York Library Association. Spring 2005, v.1, no.2, p. 23-38. Singer describes the need for succession planning for your own institution as well as the profession as a whole and the problems that evolve without it. The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) is the global voice of the library and information profession. Although its publications have appeal outside of the United States, many of them are on target for U.S. libraries.
Continuing Professional Development: Pathways to Leadership in the Library and Information World, edited by Ann Ritchie and Clare Walker. Munich, Germany: Saur,
2007. Available through Access Pennsylvania database. A pdf version is also available. See especially the article “Efforts in Leadership and Succession Planning, Large and Small,” by Mary L. Chute, p. 85-99. (p. 86-100 pdf) Mary Chute is the Deputy Director for Libraries, Institute of Museum and Library Services. Her article describes various programs in the United States The best of plans can be thwarted if job openings don’t occur. William C. Byham, co-founder, chairman and CEO of Development Dimensions International and a global talent management expert, wrote an article for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, July 7, 2009. “Private Sector: Delayed Retirements Clog Pipeline.”