Believe it or not, that question is generally the first one we ask of a potential seller-client when we have been called into conference about selling their practice. Some of the answers are pretty predictable; more golf, fishing, skiing etc. along with volunteering at their church, travel and an expanded presence in the life of their grandchildren. Others are a little disconcerting; from “I’m sure my wife will find something for me to do” to “as little as possible” It seems that everyone has opinion about the new form retirement should take on for the Baby Boomer generation but the consensus seems to be that some realistic advanced planning will likely make this a more productive and satisfying stage of your life.
Not to make this a book review but texts like Robin Ryan’s Retirement Reinvention might be worth a read. It would be a shame to retire from a successful career in dentistry only to fail with a miserable retirement.
You might be wondering why this is any of our business. After all, isn’t it just our job to sell the practice and put a check in the bank for our client? Well the answer is both Yes and No. While we hope that our work contributes to our client’s financial wellbeing (Question number two; Do you have enough put away to live comfortably into the future?), in the final analysis, a successful transition includes the stories about both buyer and seller living happily ever after. We like to hear that the seller is pleased with the outcome of this legacy and that the buyer has gotten a head start on a successful career. Both take a lot of work but that’s ok. If you are considering moving toward retirement, please do some realistic planning about your future. Where do you want to live? Do you have a hobby that could become a new part time career? Does your church need a new sound technician? Are you and your spouse ready to be together many more hours per day than you have experienced over the last 40 years? Do you need to get on top of some health issues? The list goes on so pick up a copy of a credible book on retirement (Robin Ryan’s seems pretty realistic)and give these things a little thought. Trust me, it will make our first meeting go much smoother.