Tip number one for the Departing CEO is:
Have a Support Group.
For example, my father was a member of Vistage. When he passed away, the Vistage group was THE number one most important resource I had. Vistage is CEO Coaching, Executive Coaching, Leadership Coaching, and CEO Mentoring. Dad had been in the group for years, so everyone in the group was familiar with the past few years of the company’s growth and changes. We meet monthly, in group and usually have a presentation by a group member, a speaker, and then everyone checks in. It is a fantastic time to hear what other CEOs are doing and toss out new ideas. In addition, we have a group leader, who meets with us individually (called 1-2-1s).
When my father passed away, they developed a Tiger Team. A Tiger Team is usually a day long, intense look at your company. It is made up of volunteers in your Vistage Group. My Tiger Team, however, was a little bit different. They meet once a month with me, for a year, to help guide me. I practice giving presentations to them, effective hand outs, I bounce ideas off of them. It has been a priceless experience for me.
Vistage isn’t the only group, and I don’t know anything about other groups, but the stronger support network you have, the easier it will be for your successor.