Your business-owner clients have reached the stage where they are able to stop and smell the roses – but how many of them are actually taking that opportunity?
Indeed, your clients could be immensely proud of everything they’ve achieved but may be holding onto their leadership role as they get older, rather than reaping the benefits of their success.
As your clients reach the stage where they can take the back seat and let other capable colleagues steer the business, they might struggle with this shift.
Often, successful small and medium-sized business owners have had similar experiences when it comes to work. These can include:
- Having varied, full and long workdays that make their life unpredictable
- Work constantly taking priority, even when it doesn’t need to
- Sacrificing personal enjoyment, including relationships and social contact, in order to maintain the smooth running of their business
- Feeling they have to control every aspect of their business, thereby struggling to delegate to others
- Becoming concerned about shifting to a less “important” role as they age, bestowing power onto other colleagues as they move into a less hands-on position
- Wanting to remain significant in the eyes of other business owners, their own colleagues, family and friends.
These traits might sound very familiar to you and, if so, you might find it difficult to counsel your clients when they reach these crossroads. After all, it can seem like every option could come with pitfalls that may dishearten them at this crucial time.
Although it might sound counterintuitive, when they reach this stage in their career, your clients’ number one goal should be total insignificance.
Read on to find out why fading into the background is actually ideal, and not the nightmare some business owners think it might be – and how working with a financial planner could turn this “nightmare” into a dream after all.
Your clients want their business to outlive them – so they need to start accepting this now
Your clients have worked tirelessly to build their business from the ground up. They know that nothing comes for free and they might feel that, if they take their foot off the gas, their company could suffer as a result.
Yet one thing your clients might not have considered is that they want their business to ultimately outlive them. Whether they plan to pass their company down to the next generation, or sell up and retire when the time is right, the business has the potential to last for generations. So, it needs to be given the opportunity to thrive in their absence.
For that reason, your clients need to begin accepting that they will eventually need to relinquish power altogether and ease themselves into the change. This could be achieved through laying out comprehensive succession plans for a family business, or working with a planner to assess the business’ growth opportunities in the hands of a new proprietor.
Accepting that the business will eventually be out of your clients’ control might help them to start delegating to other senior colleagues, allowing your clients to gain perspective and achieve a better work-life balance.
Taking a back seat could be imperative for your clients’ physical and mental health
To be successful, business owners often have to push themselves beyond what they thought they were capable of.
Your clients will be entirely familiar with feeling burned out, and they might have sacrificed their mental and physical wellbeing many times in order to put the health of the company first.
However, nobody is invincible. Taking a step back from their company could give your clients the much-needed mental and physical rest they have denied themselves for years now.
In fact, studies have shown that senior company officials are particularly vulnerable to work-related health problems. Health and Safety England (HSE) statistics for 2021 show that managers and senior officials can be significant sufferers of work-related stress, anxiety, and depression.
What’s more, men and women aged 45–54 are some of the most frequently affected individuals when it comes to these symptoms of work-related stress.
Your clients need to realise they aren’t invincible, and that by becoming less significant in the day-to-day running of their company, they could be rewarded with better mental and physical health as a result.
Freedom is the trade-up for insignificance
We all want to be important. We all want to be respected. Becoming “insignificant” is a common fear for all people, not just business owners.
Even so, the payoff of “insignificance” for your clients is getting to live the life they’ve worked so hard for. Ultimately, they have been successful in their field and want to feel the benefits of that success, but aren’t quite ready to take the leap into freedom just yet.
It can be emotionally strenuous for your clients to relinquish control of their business and prioritise their personal and social lives. By working with a planner, your clients can rely on the guidance of experienced professionals who can give them the peace of mind they need to live a less stressful life.
A financial planner isn’t just there to offer financial insights – we can also counsel your clients emotionally, acting as a confidant when they need help transitioning into this next period in their life.
Get in touch
Good financial planning can transform the way you think about your life and your future. If your clients could benefit from becoming less important to their business, put them in touch with us today.
Email email@example.com or call 0121 313 1370.