CEO term limits create uncertainty. While it is clear that a CEO getting limited out cannot continue in place, it’s not clear who is taking their place. Deloitte’s board of directors has chosen to accelerate that uncertainty by not nominating its CEO, Cathy Engelbert, for a second term. The whole concept raises questions about the pros and cons of term limits. This article makes the case for defined terms without limits striking just the right balance between stability and accountability.

As I’ve said throughout this series, executive onboarding is the key to accelerating success and reducing risk in a new job. People generally fail in new executive roles because of poor fit, poor delivery or poor adjustment to a change down the road. They accelerate success by 1) getting a head start, 2) managing the message, 3) setting direction and building the team and 4) sustaining momentum and delivering results. In Deloitte’s case, they are choosing to manufacture a change down the road to force the organization to adjust.

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