Why so many companies get it wrong and what to do about it.
Travis Kalanick was a man under siege. It was June 2017 and the Uber founder and CEO was the subject of intense criticism for a wide array of reasons. It didn't help that the mercurial Kalanick that all of these problems unfolded against a backdrop of financial uncertainty.
On June 13, Kalanick announced he was taking a leave of absence from his post. That leave of absence did not, however, satisfy investors and members of the board of directors. For Uber, the abrupt departure of its founder and subsequent resignations by executives created an enormous leadership change. Investors had to be comforted, employees reassured and customers encouraged to maintain their loyalty.
If you are like most CHROs, you probably have no plan for unexpected crises like this. Most organizations put little planning or forethought into how they will respond to sudden executive departures. In scenarios like this, even the most successful organizations can be left scrambling. Thankfully, the antidote to those worst-case scenarios is fairly simple: you need to plan ahead.
This guide examines some of the triggers for executive departures, the negative consequences of a poorly managed exit, and solutions that can help you and your organization manage amicable and positive transitions.