Select market master recruiters can also be effective succession strategists. Here are important considerations and questions to ask when succession planning.

Plan Ahead

Plan 10 years in advance to ensure that the most essential construction leadership roles will be covered when your experienced employees retire. If you’re struggling to fill significant roles, then it may be time to work with a market master to consult on how to land the talent needed to fill challenging positions in the future. Planning ahead gives you the chance to consider all of your options. Would it be more prudent to sell the company to an outsider, or have a plan for the key people in the company to purchase stock in the company over time? If you do it within, ideally you’re picking folks who are your key people who can really take the business over, and share your motivation and vision to take it to the next level.

Questions to Consider

Think about these questions carefully before making a decision:

  • What is my business worth without me?
  • How will it run?
  • What would happen if I took 6 months or a year off? If it would fall apart, it’s not worth as much.
  • How sustainable is the business without me?
  • Do I need to bring on right individuals to make it more sustainable?
  • Do I have right people already?
  • What type of mentorship and training do I need provide to get the right people up to speed?
  • Do I really want to leave?

Assess Your Talent

Strong talent is something that most successful organizations have in common. Becoming a top construction firm starts with building a full roster of the most talented people in your market place. Emphasize leadership development by encouraging on-the-job shadowing across different roles. The more cross trained employees that you have the better because it helps to ensure that job responsibilities are covered if an experienced employee leaves the organization.

Options When Selling the Firm

If you’re selling it internally, you may want to work with a consulting company like FMI to evaluate the your companies value. Set a price that’s a percentage of real value and allow key people to buy the business by buying shares over time. This will incentivize your key people to invest the company. You could offer to contribute part of their salary and bonuses toward the buyout. But you need to be able to show it’s a better investment than them keeping their bonus money. Some leaders would prefer to hand over the reigns to family members. That scenario has its own unique set of considerations. It’s important to get ahead of the game and lay out a plan.

Alternate Structures

Although some construction owners opt for selling their businesses, others remain reluctant to let go of what they have worked so hard to build. You may decide not to sell at all. You may decide to be a chairman of the board, but you groom a president to run the firm. This takes advanced planning. You’ll still control the business but won’t be running it. You may want to groom a whole team.

Size of the Business

For a small to mid-size company, be transparent when devising an internal succession plan. Succession plans need to be customized for your circumstances. No two businesses are alike. When a business is sold, the biggest assets are the people working for you. Sell your business based on your talent.

There are too many variables for a one-size-fits-all strategy. Construction recruiters will help you to think outside of the box and get creative with succession planning.


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