What would you do if you didn’t have to come to the office every day?
A few years ago, I walked away from a successful market research consulting business that I had acquired, developed and merged. I had no idea what was coming next, but I knew that a typical retirement was not going to happen for me.
And what’s more, I knew that a lot of other people were in the same boat. So many entrepreneurs throw themselves into their company to the point that work, especially working at a high level, becomes a central part of their identity. Once they step away from the daily press of running a business, they can feel a little lost.
So I wondered, how can business owners learn to write a new story for their lives? How can they create a “Life 2.0”? And how can they start the journey before they walk out the door?
You may not be ready to retire or sell your business—it might even be years before that happens—but it can still be a good idea to start wrapping your mind around “what’s next?”
What’s Next for Your Company
Why start thinking about Life 2.0 now? Because there’s a lot to be gained by starting early. You give yourself more time to look at your organization and do the things you need to do to:
» Maximize the value of the company and ensure that a forward-focused culture is established.
» Have a leadership development plan in place for others to step up and take over.
» Ensure that you transfer the knowledge that is important to carry the busi-ness forward.
This isn’t a task list that can be knocked out in six months. It takes upwards of two years to get it set.
You may also find that preparing your company for the long run—by building your team, investing in new markets,
documenting and refining your operations—will deliver amazing results in the short term, too.
And What About You?
And while you’re working to ensure a solid foundation for your company, you need to think about “what’s next” for you.
Maybe you’re not sure what you’re going to do, but three simple steps can get you started:
Think about what gives you a spark // Is it a passion or hobby that’s fallen by the wayside? A cause or career that’s a big draw for you? Now is the time to start looking into it. As busy as you are right now, you might find small ways to start pursuing these extracurricular passions—and feel more energized as a result.
Start cultivating new relationships // True, work relationships change when you leave. It takes time to build a supportive community, so scout for the groups outside of your work that may figure into your new career or Life 2.0.
Talk to people about your plans // Let people know what you may be looking for and what’s interesting to you. Rebooting for your Life 2.0 is easier the bigger your network is. Your longtime customer might know about a nonprofit that could use your expertise. Your spouse’s cousin could help you connect with your next big business opportunity.
There are always some bumps in the road when you’re starting on a new path, but the good news is, it’s the start of a great adventure! If you’re ready to take on some new challenges and amazing experiences, there’s no time like the present to get started.