The Business Transition Blog

The Buzz is Building

So far this week I’ve spoken to:

  • Martin, a partner in an accounting firm in Bedford, Nova Scotia,
  • Paul Cronin and Jack Beauregard with the Transition Planning Institute in Boston,
  • Dennis Gano with the Exit Planning Institute in Chicago
  • and a few other advisors to business owners,

and the common refrain is that everyone knows there is a problem on the horizon for business owners, except… wait for it… THE BUSINESS OWNERS! They continue to believe it’s too early to think about, worry about or plan for the transition of their business.

I understand where they’re coming from. If I hadn’t had a health scare I’d be thinking the same thing. Who really wants to admit that there’s a time in the near future when they won’t be in charge of their business, that their vision of who they are as a person must change and they have to BEGIN (not finish overnight) but begin the process of transitioning themselves and their business for the next chapter.

Why do they have to?

Because if they don’t they’re being totally irresponsible. Because they can’t predict the future and know that they might not be able to do it later. Because life is full of surprises. Because employees, suppliers, and family members are depending upon them and trusting them to do the right thing. And if they haven’t prepared, then it could all be lost. The money. The reputation. The jobs. The security. All down the tubes.

“It won’t happen to me.”

Famous last words.