Succession Planning Project
November 19, 2012
When Apple Inc.’s co-founder, chairman and CEO Steve Jobs passed away in 2011 there were many lessons to be learnt about succession planning. Steve Jobs was ill from pancreatic cancer and took a medical leave of absence before resigning and passing away; Apple’s stocks dropped 5% just hours after the announcement of his resignation (Wikipedia Steve Jobs, n.d. Pg.1.). Apple and Steve Jobs knew that a succession plan for his position was crucial to ensure that the organization would be able to survive his legacy and departure (allAfrica, 2011, Pg.1). Identifying a successor with several years experience will help the successor perform their job better overall, than an unexpected position to be filled with no potential candidates ready for the task. Any HR department must recognize that there needs to be a plan developed to deal with possible departure, disability, and death of member of the organization’s executive team. There were many problems that Apple had to overcome when trying to find a suitable candidate to replace Steve Jobs (Associates, 2011, pg.1). First off, Jobs was more than just an average CEO of a company, he embodied the essence of Apple with vision and passion for design excellence with an amazing business savvy. Secondly, replacing Steve Jobs’ leadership style and philosophy could be nearly impossible. The overall process of finding someone to fill all the requirements and grow with the organization, as Jobs did, would be a critical decision. The company’s motto is “Think Differently” and that is exactly what they did to help them determine proper candidates and develop a suitable succession plan for Steve Jobs legendary role; Most companies would hire executive recruiters to find potential candidates, which may not yield an accurate person for the position. Following McDonalds and General Electric’s examples, Apple founded the Apple University in 2008...
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