Archive for January, 2016

Alignment Solutions Newsletter: Do You Want to Espouse Excellence or Settle for Mediocrity?

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016

Do You Want to Espouse Excellence
or Settle for Mediocrity?

Alignment solution: Organizations that aspire to excellence yet fail to set themselves up for success are letting their customers and their employees down.

The mission or vision statements of many organizations make a commitment to service and/or product excellence. Ensuring excellence requires leaders to set their organizations and employees up for success rather than for mediocrity. Yet often the infrastructure required to meet this level of commitment is missing or woefully inadequate.

One way to achieve excellence is to develop and implement a viable succession process that ensures a pool of qualified individuals who are ready, able, and willing to fill critical vacancies throughout the organization. The alternatives tend to be either no process or a replacement approach that’s inconsistent, costly, and often mis-matches people and jobs, to the detriment of both customers and employees.

A viable succession process sets up individuals and agencies for success by providing a systematic framework within which people are able to get the training and development needed for them to be fully successful in their current and future jobs. It focuses on critical jobs and skills throughout the organization, not just at the top. It enables organizations to deliver on their promise of excellence.

Here’s why implementing a viable succession process enables excellence rather than mediocrity:

  • When the right people are in the right jobs, positive outcomes result – e.g., employee morale and productivity are high, customers are delighted, and profitability increases.
  • The establishment of a process to share and maintain an institutional memory ensures valuable information and expertise are preserved.
  • Providing a process for promotion from within is a powerful tool for attracting and retaining the best performers.
  • Organizations that rely heavily on customer relationships can provide the consistency their customers demand.
  • By continuously monitoring employees’ competencies against customers’ or technology’s needs, leaders are able to adapt more quickly to change.
  • Employees are set up to succeed because they are prepared for the jobs they are called upon to perform.
  • Espousing and delivering excellence increases customers’ and employees’ trust.

Leaders who truly aspire to excellence would be well served to develop and implement a viable succession process throughout their organizations. An effective succession process is scalable to the situation and the available resources, so there’s no excuse for failing to establish one. Leaders who are unwilling to do so need to move aside in favor of those willing to make good on their organizaton’s commitment to excellence.

If you’d like some ideas about how to educate yourself and others about the critical need for establishing a viable succession process in your organization, take a look at my articles How to Make a Compelling Case for Implementing a Succession Process and Succession Planning Myths and Realities. To find other articles and resources that may be of value to you, I invite you to visit my web site at and my blog at

Alignment Solutions is a concise, bi-weekly newsletter written specifically to help organizational leaders optimize their business results. Your e-mail address is never shared with anyone for any reason. You may unsubscribe by clicking the link on the bottom of this e-mail.

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© 2016 Pat Lynch. All rights reserved.