Ensuring successful CEO succession through advisory and assessment for a global mining business


After a period of consolidation, the Board of this market-leading business was divided around future strategic direction and the balance between operational efficiency versus diversification.

The incumbent CEO was successful, but the Board anticipated his departure in the next three years. They therefore instigated a long-term succession process.

Key stakeholders had preferences for potential contenders early on, making it all the more critical to create an objective, systematic process.

Key objectives were to:

  • Create clarity around CEO requirements
  • Develop potential internal successors while remaining open to an external appointment
  • Ensure a fair process that enabled the right selection decision and a successful transition.




  • We created a roadmap of key milestones to create alignment and build objectivity into the end-to-end process.
  • Following interviews with all Board members, a profile of success was created which helped to create consensus around future CEO requirements.
  • Developmental assessments of the Exec team were conducted to help them optimize their potential and enhance their future candidature as CEO.
  • Targeted development plans were created to accelerate development. Where coaching was required, either a third-party provider was used or a different YSC consultant to ensure impartiality.
  • 18 months later, refresher interviews were conducted with the original YSC assessors. They included a comprehensive 360 feedback process to measure progress against goals and triangulate data.
  • An external search was conducted and the key external candidate was assessed against the agreed criteria.
  • YSC presented candidate comparisons to the Board, including predictive insights and recommendations. We facilitated the discussion, helping the Board to systematically evaluate strengths and risks against the agreed criteria.
  • Once a successor was appointed, we provided transition coaching and helped to develop the new ExCo.
  • Throughout the project, advisory support was given to the Chair, Board, CEO and CHRO to optimize the process, and their role in it.


  • The impartial, objective approach minimized the risk of bias and enabled a fair, data-led, decision-making process.
  • We critically informed the debate about the merits of an external appointment vs. an internal successor.
  • The appointment is viewed as highly successful. The Chair considers it the right appointment decision which is associated with a significant increase in share price.
  • We helped to optimize the CEO’s transition and accelerated Exec team performance.

Find out more about CEO Succession with YSC...

CEO succession is not just about an individual role change; it is an opportunity for C-suite development and organizational renewal. Done well, it creates a new phase of growth for the whole enterprise.​