Bob owned and operated a profitable printing business for over 30 years. His son Jason was active in the business as the VP of sales and Bob had been grooming him to take over the company since he came on board about 3 years ago. Unfortunately Bob never really spoke to Jason about officially taking over and when Bob told him he intended to retire the following year due to health issues, Jason surprised him with a bombshell; he had no interest in taking over the company. He had only worked there to help his Dad out. In fact, he really didn’t enjoy the industry much and would be looking for a job elsewhere once his Dad retired.
Bob was stunned. At age 64, with no one else to take over the business, he had to put the business on the market to sell to a third-party buyer. His dream of the business staying in the family was not going to be a reality. Bob had never saved much outside of the business, he had always reinvested in new equipment.
Bob’s health deteriorated and the business suffered. Jason and Bob’s relationship became very strained and Jason found employment elsewhere. Bob could not find a buyer for his business and ended up closing and selling off the equipment and building.
Bob and his son Jason now have a very strained relationship
- Bob needed the money from his business to fund his lifestyle. He and his wife have had to downsize their home and cut back on spending to conserve cash.
- The business is now closed.
- Bob and Jason should have had a very open conversation about Bob’s plans, years ago, to see if Jason had an interest in taking over the business. If not, Bob could have planned accordingly by ensuring that the business was ready to sell, finding a new successor and increasing his savings outside of the business to reduce his financial dependence.
- The business could have continued under the watchful eye of Bob’s successor or buyer.
- Bob and Jason would still be having Thanksgiving dinner together.