When is it time to call it a day?

I recently spoke to the CAANZ small practice group, or whatever it is now called. I opened my presentation by noting that 30 years ago when I first presented to the group, I was young. What concerned me 30 year later was that I was still one of the younger ones in the room.

Now do not get me wrong, I am one of the first to acknowledge that millennials and newer younger generations do not like these types of meetings, preferring online digital get-togethers instead.

However, it does show the sad reality that too many of us simply hang onto our practices for far too long. So why is this the case?

Well the answer falls into several discrete categories:

  1. Fear – of not finding something else to do.
  2. Having nothing else to do.
  3. Needing the dollars; not having saved enough over 40-50 years a few more will not change anything.
  4. They love what they do.
  5. Inability to decide then action it.

Sadly, for whatever reason is applicable the result is that we see many of the practices for our aging colleagues slowly decline in so many ways. From not getting new clients, to not investing in new technology or keeping up with relevant CPD topics. It is a slow and painful death.

So, if you are facing the challenges can I suggest you do a few things.

  1. Invest in and run your practice as if you are going to be in it for another 20 years, whether you will or will not be. Find new clients, attend CPD and keep up with technology. You will get the investment well repaid when it is time to sell.
  2. Sell and get out. Go and do something different or nothing at all. Leave gracefully and at the top of your game. A well-known receiver once told me that a compulsory retirement policy at age 55 was actually a great thing, as it enabled retired partners enough time to go and have another career.

So, if you are ageing and these issues do affect you, make sure you have a practice that both provides you with a decent income and ultimately something that is of value to sell.

Always happy to have a chat about your options.

Nigel Smith