Apple may not want to disclose its CEO succession plan, but at least it has one, notes “All Things D” ( Which is more than you can say for most other companies.

According to a global survey of 1,300 companies by Korn/Ferry (, although 98% of companies believe a CEO succession plan to be important, only 35% currently have one in place. And 49% haven’t had one in place for the last three years. Despite the recent increase of unexpected departures of several high profile CEOs, the trend hasn’t fully opened the eyes of corporate executives, according to the Korn/Ferry Executive Survey.

“Given the number of abrupt, high profile executive departures this year, it’s surprising that more companies are not acting with greater urgency to put a CEO succession plan in place,” says Joe Griesedieck, vice chairman and managing director of Korn/Ferry Board & CEO Services Practice.  “In today’s environment, succession planning should be a part of any company’s standard approach to governance.”

Recent changes in federal regulation concerning CEO succession disclosure rules have changed the outlook of organizations considering the importance of CEO succession planning.  Of those surveyed, 48% reveal that CEO succession planning is more important now than it has been in the past, while 51% haven’t changed their attitude toward CEO succession and believe it has always been important.

“That’s something shareholders calling for Apple to disclose its succession plan annually might want to keep in mind as the prepare for the company’s annual meeting later this month,” says “All Things D.” “On this issue, Apple is actually a leader in corporate governance.”