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CEO succession – internal or external?


Soon after their appointment the Chair initiated a process to understand the capability of the existing senior leaders as a precursor to running a formal selection process that would also include external candidates.  

The new Chair stepped into the role knowing that they would be responsible for ensuring the successful transition from a founder CEO to the next generation. The founders had created a unique culture which lies at the heart of the company’s success.  

From Insight to Action 

The Strengths Unleashed Triangulation approach was chosen to provide the data and insight to inform this process. Ten senior leaders, including the existing CEO, were assessed, and the results were shared with the Board as a key input to the transition process. 

Based on this assessment work, focused Development Guides were created by Strengths Unleashed for the leading contenders. These were designed to harness natural talents, build on existing strengths and address any gaps or blind spots. 

The Power of Company Culture 

The business was highly regarded for its strong and distinctive culture, which the founders had instilled from its inception. 

Given the potential consequences of damaging this culture in the process of succession, the Strengths Unleashed Triangulation assessment was tailored to include a cultural diagnostic that identified the key values that the new CEO needed to espouse. 



After two years the internal candidates were reassessed and compared with a shortlist of external candidates. Armed with the valuable insights gained through the evaluation process, the Board chose an internal candidate as the CEO successor to support the ambitions of the business.  

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