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Matthew & Bo Get Help For Succession Planning

Updated: May 28

In one week, four parent-child business owners engage with me about succession planning. Three of them are under such stress and duress that they cannot simultaneously interact in the same room with me. Only one father and son are proactive and healthy enough to be engaged in the same room together: Matthew and Bo.

Matthew pioneers a wildly successful business and eventually invites his son Bo to join him. He allows Bo to grow in his position. A few failures and many successes characterize his son's leadership.

But, Matthew and Bo are struggling with succession planning. There are dynamics in their struggle they are not prepared to deal with. Neither understands the other at a level that allows them to make progress. When it comes to succession planning, there is tension.

They value teamwork, knowing that one is too small a number to achieve significance or leave a legacy. Ensuring the business makes a profit, blesses its community, and advances its purpose in their absence is important to them both.

Seeing themselves as a generational relay team, passing the baton is a high value. Matthew knows that Bo is the future of the company. They seek out counsel from a wise attorney.

Their first breakthrough comes with the attorney, who understands the emotional and financial sides in developing buy-sell agreements. He helps them lay out steps for transition. It is invaluable to talk through these steps and the emotions they trigger.

The second breakthrough comes when they both understand that one must hold decision-making power in tiebreaker situations. Something vital is released in Matthew as they agree that he should have that power. Something about holding that power compels Matthew not to use it. This is a significant breakthrough.

The third breakthrough happens when, for the first time in front of his son, Matthew admits that Bo's success makes him feel worthless and unneeded. For all these years, Matthew's identity has been the business leader. Now that Bo owns his role as successful leader of the business, Matthew feels useless.

Bo begins to understand that he must work to elevate his father to flourish in this new role. Matthew's strength is with the customers in sales. His new role is to bring in customers for his son to serve.

Their last breakthrough involves valuing their father/son relationship above any business or financial one. They agree they will not engage in business or discussions about the company after hours and on weekends.

Matthew and Bo now see themselves as cheerleaders for each other. Passing the baton to the next runner, cheering them on becomes the previous holder's new job. They are both committed.

It all begins with conversations and grows from there. To help initiate these strategic conversations, I have created a resource to help. It is my gift to you, Fourteen Questions To Fuel Succession Planning Conversations. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD.

Keep making a profit, blessing your community, and advancing your purpose!

Harry T. Jones

P.S. Many people are having excellent succession planning conversations with my resource, Fourteen Questions To Fuel Succession Planning Conversations. Download it today.

*All my stories are about real people and situations. I have changed their names and some particulars to protect them.

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