Study: Most Healthcare Organizations Have No Succession Plan

Oak Brook, Ill. — Aug. 6

Nearly three-quarters of health care CEOs between the ages of 55 and 59 have no current plans to retire or are at least five years away from retirement, according to a new national report by Witt/Kieffer, an executive search firm.

The report, “Future Plans for Transitioning Out of the C-Suite: A Confidential CEO Survey,” also found that many respondents feel their organization is not prepared for their departure, with more than half saying that no one at their organization is ready to step into the CEO role.

Witt/Kieffer recently surveyed 200 hospital and health system CEOs nationwide over the age of 55 about their future plans for retirement and transitioning out of the C-suite.

Key survey findings also include:

• Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they have goals to achieve before retiring, and 83 percent feel they need to help solve the challenges in healthcare.
• Nearly three-quarters said that the board of directors does not want them to retire yet.
• Less than 40 percent of healthcare CEOs have worked with the board to develop a formal succession planning process, and only about one-third have mentored their successor.
• Between now and retirement, 73 percent want to explore more options for leisure activities, and almost half want to explore a second career, many in teaching or consulting roles.

Seventy-three percent of survey respondents are between the ages of 55 and 62, while about one-quarter are age 63 and over.

Source: Witt/Kieffer