In many cases your business successor could be selected by default. If you have a family business, for example, there is likely one member who is more qualified, interested and active in the business than others.
In this situation the founder might have already spent a good deal of time grooming the successor for this situation. In this particular case, the challenge for business succession planning has to do with treating the other siblings or non-participating family members equitably. Able founders need to be prepared for how to pass along their precious creation to successors who have worked hard to take on the risks associated with it.
If succession has not already been determined by birth order, interest or proximity, it may require a group effort to select and groom an individual. Individuals who are not family members could even be recruited onto this transition team. It is unlikely to be successful if you opt to divide power between competing children because it can generate a great deal of conflict and impact the business negatively in terms of finances and management. Careful business succession planning requires thinking about where you have come from, where you are now and where you would like the business to go, and then evaluating various individuals who may fit into the roles associated with that business.