Baby Boomers make up a significant number of owners of HVAC and other contracting businesses. Nearing the end of their careers, it’s a hard cold fact that many of these contractors can no longer meet the physical demands of this business. Others no longer want to engage in the physical work it requires. Many contractors are simply not ready for this inevitable exit from their professional lives.
Let’s exit well
You WILL leave your business at some point. You can accomplish this by preparing OR you can be carried out of the building with your boots on. Your decision, your choice!
Company financials most commonly stand out as the important issue to be addressed when contractors prepare to exit their business. However, of weighty importance yet often missed or put to the side, are the emotional ups and downs, and draining effect this emotional roller-coaster can have on an owner exiting their business.
What Bo says
In Finish Big: How Great Entrepreneurs Exit Their Companies on Top, Bo Burlingham addresses the emotional consequences in several chapters. Burlingham writes, that although he does not qualify WHY sadness affects many former owners, “What I can say is that the longer people have spent preparing for their exits, the less likely they are to experience these problems.”
He also tells us, “ Indeed, the hardest part of the exit is seldom the sale itself. It’s usually what comes afterward, in the transition stage, when you enter the next phase of your life with the consequences of the decisions you’ve made.”
Exit strategy advice from Contractor Succession
Based on our own experience at Contractor Succession, working alongside contractors thinking about an exit or actively moving forward, we strongly urge you to also consider the emotional aspects of your exit to be just as important as the financial considerations are.