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ERIC Number: ED512794
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 150
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1092-7414-1
A New Paradigm: Strategies for Succession Planning in Higher Education
Richards, Cheryl L.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
Today's successful businesses and organizations realize the importance of strong leadership to maintain, grow and sustain long-term business productivity and viability. In a time when the skilled workforce continues to shrink and the competition for top talent increases, many businesses have developed sophisticated succession management practices to ensure their organizations will be well positioned to compete in the future. Like private businesses, institutions of higher education will face similar challenges as those who have led for decades leave their institutions. As such, the academy must also formulate strategies for attracting, developing and retaining a leadership pool that will ensure the institution's long-term health. Leadership development is not new to academics and many institutions have supported these programs for years. Few, however, have adopted formal succession planning strategies that are both strategic and deliberate and encompass the full spectrum of succession planning activities. Furthermore, the culture and governance structure present in institutions of higher education is often quite different than that of private businesses. The presence of shared governance and collegial cultures requires academic institutions to think differently about succession planning. This grounded-theory study looked at the succession planning efforts of 6 educational institutions representing the spectrum of 2-year community and technical colleges, 4-year public research universities, and 4-year private universities. The researcher shares current institutional approaches to succession planning and examines how organizational culture and governance in higher education may have impacted deliberate or formal succession planning efforts. Several findings are revealed to include (a) acknowledgement that while leadership development activities were prevalent, few institutions had formal succession plans, and (b) examples of how academic governance and culture may have influenced institutional approaches to succession planning. The author concludes by recommending several strategies for implementing deliberate and systemic succession plans in the academic environment. These include (a) securing executive champions, (b) aligning the succession plan to institutional culture, mission, vision and goals, (c) taking an approach not unlike strategic planning, (d) carefully constructing communication plans to embrace talent development without inferring entitlement, and (e) a continuous evaluation of both the people and processes involved in succession planning. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A