Boomers’ Succession – A Call To Action

Tuesday, January 26 2016

FutureSelfBoomer business owners are about to trigger a major business upset in this country. Many businesses will close as a result of their owner’s procrastination or negligence. Employees will lose jobs, customers will lose suppliers, bank loans will default, and formerly proud entrepreneurs will lose their retirement plan, their reputations, and in some cases their marriages.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

Many Boomers feel invulnerable, like Superman, and they are pretty sure they can do anything they put their minds to. They believe the pop psychology that raised expectations and promised that mountains can be moved. And mountains were moved.

But even Superman is getting old. (He was first introduced 78 years ago!) Time marches on and many Boomers are falling victim to the age-related challenges that they thought happened only to their parents’ generation. And yet, some still have their heads firmly planted in the sand and deny the inevitable.

The inescapable outcome of the passage of time is that you will transition your business. One or more of these will happen:

  1. You will die
  2. You will become disabled
  3. You will simply close your business and walk away
  4. You will sell it without much preparation or planning
  5. You will sell it in a planned and thoughtful way

Given a choice – and you still have choice, what do you want to see happen to your business?

You know that transition is unavoidable; choosing to procrastinate or deny it, which may be understandable from an emotional perspective, is foolish and irresponsible. Many proud entrepreneurs who have worked hard their whole lives and are counting on the sale of their business to support their retirement will be sorely disappointed. Many will end up working for someone else to make ends meet after their business fails.

So, stop the madness. Be responsible, thoughtful and practical. Apply the attributes that made you successful in the first place to this challenge. Turn the problem into an opportunity. You know how to do that.