You feel ready to look for a successor for your Illinois-based business. What qualities should you seek to feel comfortable with your decision?

The Minority Business Development Agency offers several tips for choosing viable candidates. Provide yourself with peace of mind and the confidence that you pass the reins of your company on to a qualified individual.

Choose from current employees

Rather than seek external candidates, look within your company to decide if any of your current employees could make for great business successors. Most times, external successors find themselves terminated or laid off, or they voluntarily vacate their leadership position.

Consider well-experienced candidates over well-educated ones

Rather than base your decision mainly by a candidate’s education level, consider the level of experience the person has. Learning about financial crises and navigating industry shake-ups does not compare to physically experiencing and handling an emergency or substantial industry change. You may not like the idea of leaving your company to someone who requires a lot of hand-holding to make up for gaps in professional experience.

Focus on the bottom line

If you operate a family business or have adult children or other relatives working for you, you may prefer to leave your company to them. Despite your sentiment, ask yourself if your adult son or niece has what it takes to lead your enterprise into the next generation.

Look for complementary skills

Besides experience, seek successor candidates with professional skills, experiences, and education that complement yours. This helps fill in gaps that you may lack in your leadership abilities, and someone with different skills may help take your business to the next level.

Take your time when narrowing your options for a business successor. You should understand all considerations before making a final decision.