When my father passed away, his business went with him. He wasn’t the most organized person and his business records were practically non-existent. There was really no way for us to carry on the business, or even sell it. It was such a shame. He worked so hard to build up a business only to have it evaporate into thin air.
I want my daughters to have the option of taking over my business if it fits into their lives at some point. My oldest is currently in college and my hope for her is that she finds a career that she feels passionately about. That career may or may not be conducive to telecommuting, but neither was mine. It wasn’t until I had children that my priorities shifted and I decided to quit my job and stay at home. Fifteen years ago, I wasn’t really interested in working at home. I was totally career-focused. But people change, priorities change. Even if my daughters are happy with careers outside of the home, I’d still like my business to be an option for them should their situations change.
Since I’ve lost my hard drive and I still don’t know if I’ll be able to retrieve all of my business records I’ve been thinking about how I need to start getting myself organized. If I want my business to survive me, I’d better get all my ducks in a row. I’ve come to realize that I’m doing just what my dad did. I’m a pretty organized person in general but if something were to happen to me I think it would be really difficult for an outside person to take over.
One thing I want to do is create a manual so that anyone could step in and have an agenda to follow. This is what I do on a daily, weekly, monthly basis, etc. I also need to create a centralized list of all of my accounts and passwords. They are currently spread between bookmarks, email folders and my brain. I might as well have them written on various scraps of paper and spread them throughout the house.
The beauty of my business is that my daughters could choose to have careers and work this part time if they wanted to. It could be a source of supplemental income, or a full time income. Whatever they decide, I want to make sure the option is available to them. I’ve worked way too hard to have it all disappear.
Is your business ready to be taken over? Have you created systems or instructions just in case?