The Depth Chart

Football coaches use a tool that is helpful in displaying not only who fulfills what roles, but also to spotlight where talent is thin and how they would respond if they should lose somebody.

The depth chart.

The depth chart is simply an org chart expanded to show who ‘backs-up’ each ‘starter.’ Of course, unlike sports teams, your business can’t employ people simply to hang around in the event that a starter gets sick or leaves. But creating a depth chart does allow you to ask and think through some important questions:

In which positions would losing a ‘starter’ create a major problem?

How could we mitigate it? (Cross-training? Splitting and re-allocating responsibilities? Doing without?)

How do we make sure we retain our critical talent?

Many organizations have an org chart. Now go one step further: develop, monitor and manage your depth chart.

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