Here are some steps that can help you reduce management gaps in your company:
Look for shortfalls. If a manager or executive were to leave the company tomorrow, is there someone who can step in and take his or her place? If not, you have a potential gap.
Evaluate whether all individuals are pulling their weight and adding value. Has each supervisor identified subordinates who are motivated by career advancement?
Identify high-performing employees who exhibit characteristics that justify advancement.
Seek employees who exhibit leadership traits and the ability to tackle additional responsibilities.
Establish career paths. Creating effective career paths requires two components: knowing the requirements for advancement to the next level and creating a clear definition of the skills necessary.
Deliver high-quality succession training programs, which align with business objectives. Take a hard look at the programs offered. How well do they align with the two universal goals of every executive: increasing revenue and cutting costs? Clearly, any training that improves employees' critical skill sets will add value to the organization. So will compliance programs and other mandated training initiatives, since they allow you to stay in business.
Mold employees by offering a mentorship program. Training time is expensive. Combine training programs and development assignments into experiences that focus on developing specific skills. This can help shorten the learning curve necessary for success. An in-house mentor can save a company a tremendous amount of expense both up front and in the long run.
Help employees develop their careers by allowing them to transfer into other areas and expand their skill sets when promotions aren't possible. This makes them more valuable to a company in the event an upper-level job opens. Many employees feel their careers are not stagnating when they are learning new skills and transferring into other areas of the company.