Only if you feel like retaining them, which is an honest, if somewhat ironic answer.
You should also tell them you like their teeth better than the others as well.
On a serious note, I think you need to tell talent they’re included in the succession plan if you have one. One of the big benefits to succession planning is retention if people know they’re on the list. Imagine the following conversation:
–You: Rick just resigned.
–Your CEO: Wasn’t he the next up for the controller role?
–CEO: Why did he leave if he knew he was up next and Pirkle (current controller) is getting ready for the stretch role in strategy?
–You: Well, because we wanted to be fair and ensure that people who aren’t a part of the succession plan feel OK about themselves, we decided not to tell people who are a part of the succession plan that they are on the list.
–CEO: What if I didn’t tell you you’re in danger of being fired? Would that be fair?
So, here’s the bottom line. I know there are lots of employee relations issues related to telling talent they’re a part of the succession plan, but you have to do it. You have the plan (at least partly) for them. So tell them. It's Talent Management, Human Resources and Human Capital 101.
Don't overthink it, HR Pro...