Yes I know it does sound like a confession is coming. The irony is not lost.
I went away on a wonderful holiday, spent a lot of time thinking about our company and a fair bit of time contemplating this post.
It started out several years ago as a way for me to share interesting and sometimes valuable learning that I've picked up along the way. Took a curve into marketing tips and tricks. Swung back and forth between personal motivation, practical business tips, and straight out selling my services. All the while appealing to pretty much anyone in business.
Over the past year I purposely transitioned it into a communication/sales tool for WarrenBDC and therefore a vehicle to speak with boomer aged business owners. To my surprise far fewer readers dropped out and I guess the interest is broader than I thought.
My intention is to continue providing worthwhile thoughts and suggestions to improve your personal and professional lives. Pretty much all the conversations I have today are with boomer age business owners. Remember, if you are 50+ years old you are a boomer.
Whether by telephone or in person I offer the same few thoughts to everybody in that first conversation. Here are some of the key ideas they thank me for sharing.
- The first thought I share with them is that 80% of transitioning their company is about what is going on inside their heads. What they are thinking about, what's keeping them up at night, and they don't know what they don't know.
- Secondly, the world of buying and selling companies is no longer black & white and solely transaction oriented but many shades of gray. The old rules do not apply any more. This is a new unique generation of owners and for many reasons their worlds and the accompanying challenges are not the same as the ones their parents faced when they were this age.
- Thirdly, most boomer age business owners do not know where to go to get good, business transition specific, guidance and services from experienced trusted advisers. You do not know how much you need for retirement, no one does. And if you think that's the only advice you need. Boy are you in for a surprise.
- And if the first three are not enough, there is money out there. Buyers are looking for good companies to purchase. They are calling us and asking for multiple, well prepared, quality businesses to purchase. And that is hard to find.
As a business owner your personal and business lives, for years, have intersected from the time you woke up until you hit the pillow at night. You can not expect to just switch off without some assistance.
So why am I writing this email that is shamelessly promoting our company? The answer is simple. There are far too many of you who are completely unprepared for what is coming. As each year goes by the problem grows nationally, globally and unquestionably in your own family and company.
The average age of a boomer in Canada is closer to the mid 60's and as you creep up on late 60's or 70 years old the decision to move forward and do something about it will be made for you. Poor health will affect you, a spouse, a parent or a partner. The industry in which you operate is changing and you could find yourself on the wrong side of change. Competitors are coming and they are well funded, younger, smarter and stronger.
So what does all this mean? You need to act now, not tomorrow. It's the night before exams and while some of you have prepared properly, the statistics are overwhelmingly against the remaining 90% who have not prepared and will inevitably struggle to transition their company. Or as some are seeing today, sell for pennies on the dollar or just close the door.
At WarrenBDC we want to assist as many owners and their families as we can, to move forward into the next fulfilling phase in their lives. And no I do not mean travel and play golf for the duration. That gets old really quickly.
If you want to take the first step, talk by telephone for a few minutes, meet for coffee or over lunch please click here.
I look forward to meeting you and if we have met before, rekindling our relationship.