Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development

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Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development
Emerald Article: Exploring succession planning in small, growing firms Sally Sambrook

Article information:
To cite this document: Sally Sambrook, (2005),"Exploring succession planning in small, growing firms", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 12 Iss: 4 pp. 579 - 594
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/14626000510628243
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Sally Sambrook, (2005),"Exploring succession planning in small, growing firms", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 12 Iss: 4 pp. 579 - 594
http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/14626000510628243
Sally Sambrook, (2005),"Exploring succession planning in small, growing firms", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 12 Iss: 4 pp. 579 - 594
http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/14626000510628243
Sally Sambrook, (2005),"Exploring succession planning in small, growing firms", Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, Vol. 12 Iss: 4 pp. 579 - 594
http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/14626000510628243

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Exploring succession planning in
small, growing firms

Exploring
succession
planning

Sally Sambrook
University of Wales Bangor, Bangor, UK

579

Abstract
Purpose – The paper aims to explore some of the issues in voluntary succession associated with finding and successfully developing principal successors to ensure the survival and growth of small firms. It highlights the key issues identified, including recruiting employees with potential, considering the work/career motives of potential successors and ways of transferring organisational and personal/tacit knowledge from the owner-manager to the successor, whether an internal employee or a new purchaser. An initial, simple model is presented, identifying three types of knowledge transfer and two tiers of succession.

Design/methodology/approach – Literature from entrepreneurship, organisation studies and human resourcing highlights the issues associated with succession planning. Qualitative research provides empirical data from four owner-managers and employees. Findings – Insight into the reasons why it is difficult to plan voluntary succession are provided. Research limitations/implications – A recognised limitation of this research is the small sample size. Further research is required to explore whether these issues – and the proposed model –...
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