Avoid stepping into a great man’s shoes: What happens first always appears better and more original than what comes after. If you succeed a great man or have a famous parent, you will have to accomplish double their achievements to outshine them. Do not get lost in their shadow, or stuck in the past not of your own making: Establish your own name and identity by changing course. Slay the overbearing father, disparage his legacy, and gain power by shining in your own way.
One thing I have learned about leadership and particularly as it pertains to the line of succession. It is of course easier to succeed a leader who failed, harder when they were benign to exceptional, but, keeping almost completely silent as if they did not exist works to the successor’s advantage. The expression “Out of sight, out of mind” is aligned with this notion I am describing. If you disparage your predecessor or praise the person matters not. You draw attention to the person you want to outshine. Take the high road. Change the subject. Point out to others who start the conversation that it would be unprofessional to discuss your predecessor especially since they are not present to defend themselves as if they might need to defend something unknown perhaps. Avoid discussing a predecessor like the plague.