Jim Collins, a professor at Stanford Business School, wrote a great book that studies history's most effective CEOs. And one of the traits he found that they all had in common was a desire to see the company become even more successful after they left. They did everything they could do to ensure the future success of their companies, including selecting and training their successors. They didn't let their egos get in the way. They never wanted people to talk about how great the company used to be. They wanted things to be even better for the company's next generation.
I think there's a lot of potential here for high school students here. So much of what you do in high school is temporary. You're the captain of the basketball team for one year. You're the president of the French club, or the lead in the school play, or the school board rep, or a section editor of the paper for just one year. Yes, you need to do a great job, and you want people to appreciate the impact that you make. But you can make an even great impact if you set up your successor to take over and have even great success when you're gone.
The school year is ending (or has already ended) for many of you. Are your successors ready to take over what you left behind? What could you do to help them be even more successful? You have two options–you assume that it's not your problem any more, or you can play an important part in helping your team, club, organization or other group be successful even after you're gone.