A succession plan is not a fixed and static document, according to Lawrence Gold, corporate attorney for law firm Carlton Fields and author of Passing the Torch Without Getting Scorched: Preserving Your Legacy With Smart Succession Planning. "It is a dynamic, evolving thing, so it needs constant monitoring and review," he says in the MDM interview Giving Up Control of Your Business.
A succession plan isn't something you can do once and forget about, Gold says, since the circumstances that the plan was originally formed around may change. "For example, the son or daughter you thought was going to take over the business and carry on your legacy all of a sudden goes in a very different direction," he says.
One way to build flexibility into the plan is to avoid ownership or management changes that happen all at once. Gradual changes, Gold says, such as transferring equity in installments instead of as a lump sum, better allow for future adjustments.