After you have had a very successful professional life, in the eyes of so many, with lot of fan following, and have not professionally reported to anyone, for last 30+ years or so, having run your own company, when time comes to pass on the baton to someone else, a professional, or your son, or someone suited to do the job, it becomes an issue for many reasons. If you are the person concerned, then you start thinking, planning, devising, developing, work patterns to transition and since you are mentally ready to do that, it happens pretty smoothly, in say 6months -1 or 2 years, if it is your own family business.
What many do not factor in is while you are doing this, you are also passing on authority, power, control of people and systems to someone or a team, without a replacement of getting back and you are left with none, suddenly, as well as the high profile fast paced job/work, which you pursued so passionately for so many years is GONE! This void creates multiple issues on many fronts. First, you are only used to people listening to you, not have the habit to listen to anyone else. You always had a team of people at your beck and call to do most of your work, as you decided over the proceedings, you are too used to being fed with data only, for you to take all the decisions. Now, you are given decisions from others for you to agree upon. This is new to you. If it’s a family business and the relationship is between father and son, it also has emotions added to it. The sons grow faster, as they are exposed to the world much earlier than you, all done by you only, to prepare him to be the decision maker of tomorrow, and they start deciding over you, as you are the first target. So, if the company is not structured well and the decision making styles are changing along generations, thereby single point decision making is giving way to multipoint decisions, there is bound to be communication gaps.
This, quite frankly is one of the most difficult phases of life, as the person who is the creator of the group of business, from scratch, is fast becoming the “problem child” in decision making, thereby turning him redundant and irrelevant. Many of us have to deal with this situation, less or more. Our acumen, wisdom, tenacity, maturity, all will be under severe test in this transition process, specially if it’s a new business, you have got into while you were doing the transition. This note of mine, might help few people who are or will go through these situations, to be prepared of it and deal with much larger sense of preparedness than others.
LIFE CAN BE COMPLEX, EVEN IF YOU ARE SIMPLE.
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