Living a Richer Life and Business Owners

Some may ask, “How will my intention to live a richer life impact me as a business owner?”

The answer to this is found when you consider some of the most significant challenges that business owners deal with day in and day out. Let’s consider these challenges and how living a richer life will address them.

Challenge #1: How do I differentiate from the competition and better connect with my ideal customer?
Successful business owners know why they exist (other than to make money), and what motivates them to lead in their field. If the company doesn’t align its values with its mission, its efforts will seem mismatched, even irrelevant to its competitive success. If it doesn’t engage the community, it will likely be surpassed by those businesses that do.

When a firm decides it should be involved with a cause, it is important to look for issues that align with the company’s mission. Both customers and employees are much more likely to value engagement when it addresses the ‘Why’ that drives a company and how they are like-minded. Knowing the key characteristics of the communities the firm serves can lead to a logical and powerful cause for alignment.

Challenge #2: How do I attract the right employees in this competitive job market?
In today’s competitive job market, attracting the best employees is challenging. Many starting or developing their careers now look for the company’s commitment to the community as a critical aspect of joining a business. Without a solid community engagement program, many firms continue to lose the best candidates to those with them.

Developing and implementing an effective corporate engagement strategy can motivate employees to much greater job satisfaction and productivity. They appreciate that the firm is committed to making the community better, and will not only work harder; they also will promote the business to friends, customers, prospective hires, and suppliers as well. Moreover productive, happy employees lead to better earnings for the business.

Challenge #3: How do I plan for exiting my business and feel good about it?
Many business owners struggle with the decision to exit from the business. They believe their identity will go with the business, they don’t buy into the traditional retirement lifestyle, and they worry about becoming bored and headed downhill fast. Even if there are other compelling reasons for the transition, they often will put off this decision (sometimes they sabotage it) so as to not face this unappealing future.

Business owners can live a much richer life when they decide to use their extensive experiences, skills, and resources to support an important cause. They can develop a new purpose and identity when they decide that helping others learn, grow and thrive will be the center of their post-business life. In this manner, leaving the business to someone else can generate freedom for recreation, travel, and a new mission focus that produces great satisfaction and meaning.

Challenge #4: How can I do good for the community and also protect my family’s future?
Those selling a business will trade one set of concerns (running the business) for another (taking care of the family, others, and important organizations without the business). It will also introduce the IRS as a major partner in your finances. It will subject you to lower investment earnings upon which you’ll rely for future needs. It will add to uncertainty about your potential for a sustainable future helping your family as well as the causes you care about for as long as needed.

Business sellers intending to live a richer life should pursue expert financial, tax, and estate planning help before they agree to sell their company. With good advice taxes can be greatly minimized, gifts to family members can be contemplated and planned for, and an investment strategy can be created to ensure that resources will be available for as long as needed for you, your family, and the organizations you support. Deciding to pursue your richer life can be greatly enabled with the right professional help, producing the best conditions to create a legacy and real significance.

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