Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


Sarah Moore


Business leaders face leadership crises as executives from the baby boomer generation retire, creating a shortage of experienced and knowledgeable leaders. Some business leaders are unprepared for the replacement of retiring senior-level executives and lack strategies for succession planning. The findings of this study indicate succession planning and leadership development play a significant role in preparing future healthcare leaders in their ability to improve the quality of patient care and improve the strategic and financial health of the organization. Guided by the human capital theory the purpose of this multiple case study was to explore the strategies used by healthcare leaders for succession planning. The study consisted of interviewing the chief executive officers of 3 separate hospitals operating under a multihospital system located in south-central Texas. The data collection process included semistructured interviews and review of relevant organizational documents related to leadership development. Through methodological triangulation and employing Yin's 5-step data analysis technique of design, prepare, collect, analyze and share, several themes emerged as strategies for succession planning. The themes of executive coaching, leadership dyads, and leadership pipelines, ensure a new generation of emerging leaders have access to experienced leaders through coaching opportunities and allow physicians to co-lead a hospital and maintain a meaningful presence in patient care. Social implications of the study include prepared leaders to implement the ongoing healthcare reform in the United States, trained to improve the quality of care provided to patients.