No Image Available

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

Senior Leader’s Phased Retirement


I am working with the senior leadership team of an SME to manage the process of the most senior leader taking phased retirement over a two year period.  I am interested in making contact with anyone who has experience in this area.  Pehaps you have managed or facilitated the the process , or perhaps you took phased retirement yourself.  Either way, I'm looking for hints and tips for managing the transition smoothly, and avoiding/minimising  the pitfalls.  Thanks.

2 Responses

  1. a little case study….

    Dear K

    Perhaps I can share a case study with you that might help you to avoid one or two pitfalls;

    The Executive Chairman hit sixty and decided that (under some pressure from his wife) he had ammassed enough money for a comfortable retirement, he wasn’t getting any younger, fitter or healthier and it was about time he let the next generation of managers take on the responsibilities and kudos of his role.  His impending retirement was announced.

    Within a matter of days he had been approached by several organisations and quangos and been begged to take on a number of non-executive and part time roles.  These approaches so stroked his ego and his sense of duty that he is now working a six day week and having to pay a full time PA.  His wife is still lonely.


  2. Managing phased retirement

    You raise an important questions, and it’s so important to get it right. It seems to me there are two sides to manage here:

    (i) the careful and sensitive phasing in of retirement for the existing post holder. This needs to recognise the value they have brought – and are still bringing – to the organisation.  I haven’t personally managed this process for a client, but I have seen it done badly, so that the senior person moving on was effectively sidelined.

    (ii) the strategic engagement of the new post holder to take over the role following the retirement.  It’s not clear from your post if this will be by promotion of one of the existing team, or by recruitmernt from outside.

    In either case, expectations of both the outgoing head and his/her replacement need to be managed. The involvement of the existing head is key to this – what does ‘phased retriement’ look like to them? What does it look like to the rest of the senior team? There could be a disconnection here that needs aligning.

    I think the first part of the process need to be a frank, facilitated discussion of expectations of both parties, to clarify exactly what each wants, needs, expects. When that is in place, you may be in a clearer position to think tactically about next steps. Some key questions for this seems to be:

    – how will the new person be developed for their new role (and recruited, if appropriate)?

    – how/when can the new person ‘sit alongside’ the outgoing post holder to learn from them?

    – how will responsibilities be handed over, and how will this be communicated to other employees? What are the potential challenges for the organsiation related to handing over repsonsibilities?

    This is all a bit general because I don’t know much about the situation, but suggest you get in touch via private message if this is helpful and you’d like to discuss further.

    Good luck!



No Image Available

Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.


Thank you!