There's another piece of my recent conversations that raised an oft-overlooked value to leadership and the work good leaders do to cultivate their teams. It's certainly worth it, in its own right, to build something that you feel has value -- for your clients and for your colleagues. It's clear in the culture you create. One that actually treats its associates like people and doesn't suffer the financial challenges brought on from the rising rates of associate turnover. But a partnership or shareholder arrangement, there's also a practical reason to 'grow your bench' by treating associates like valued members of the team. At some point, you need them to be the team. Hopefully you're creating a firm that will realize it doesn't need you, but that it wants you to be there as long as you feel like contributing.
Photo taken from BBC Travel Online - The massive mosque built once a year
You're not going to live forever, no matter how on top of the world you are today. And at some point, you're going to want to retire. When you're ready, is anyone around you going to care that you're gone? And -- from a more mercenary position -- are those left in the firm going to be willing to offer you the retirement/buyout you think you deserve?
Your succession plan depends on your leadership and the leadership environment across the firm. Creating a firm full of 'killers' is fine until your retirement negotiations become the prey.
I'll dig into the many connections between leadership and succession planning again soon, but it was just too urgent that I remind you ...