The passing of Michael Gudinski left a gap at the Mushroom Group, a business he started nearly 50 years ago. However, it was a gap he planned for.
When I first saw the heading that the reins had been passed to Gudinski’s son, Matt, my immediate thought was, ‘is he ready for it’? Yet he has been involved in the business for some eight years, working beside his father to soak up what he needed to know when the time came. The time came faster than anticipated.
It is an important subject for any business, whether it be a family-owned business or otherwise. The gap that is left when any role is vacant, especially a critical role for the business, can have consequences which are difficult to recover from.
Yet these gaps are often not planned for.
The reality is that it takes time to recognise the critical gaps which can be created in your business if the person filling that gap is not there. It can also take time to recognise the talent you have within your business already who can fill that gap.
Sometimes talent isn’t always staring you in the face. Sometimes, it needs to be excavated. Sometimes the person you think is the natural successor isn’t always the right person. Is it what they want to do? Will they take the time and make the effort to work on what they need to take that next step? It isn’t always straight forward.
Sometimes the person diligently working away in the background, never causing trouble, or being noticed may well be the right person.
There is an absolute benefit in understanding where your gaps are, understanding the capability and potential of those within your team already and developing and implementing a plan to safeguard the longevity and success of your business.
Do you know who will fill your gaps? Are they right under your nose?