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Trying to get the courage.........
Old 09-10-2013, 05:55 AM   #1
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Trying to get the courage.........

Just found this forum last weekend and am loving it!

I just turned 59, still working in my late husbands family's business. I am not an owner but am one of the holder's of our business license. If I retire someone else will have to take the licensing exam and none of the owners wants to do that. My current husband is 62 and recently retired. It is getting harder and harder for me to go to work everyday but haven't gotten up the courage to bring up the subject of my retirement with the family. My husband and I are financially able for me to retire so I just need to find the "courage" to do it. I really have no idea how they will react and it really is an emotionally charged issue for me.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation.
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:12 AM   #2
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None of the owners are holders of the license? From this distance, that sounds like a problem for the owners, not for you the employee.

Is the license coming up for a renewal? If so, and if you are not ready to bring up the issue in the context of your retirement - then you might use that event to bring up the issue generically, in the context of succession planning. "Mr. Owner, what will you do if the license holder(s) gets hit by a bus?"
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:40 AM   #3
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None of the owners are holders of the license? From this distance, that sounds like a problem for the owners, not for you the employee.

Is the license coming up for a renewal? If so, and if you are not ready to bring up the issue in the context of your retirement - then you might use that event to bring up the issue generically, in the context of succession planning. "Mr. Owner, what will you do if the license holder(s) gets hit by a bus?"
Almost exactly what I was thinking - except my version was a beer truck rather than a bus.

IMO, it is imperative that someone else in the business be licensed so the business can continue should you become ill, disabled, temporarily injured, etc. What happens when you go on vacation?

Like Harry said, it is their problem as the owners of the business. Your only obligation is to give them fair warning of your plan to retire so they have sufficient time to get someone licensed. If they fail to do so, then they have a problem.
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Old 09-10-2013, 07:46 AM   #4
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Welcome to the forum, Rena.

As others have noted, succession planning is the responsibility of senior management. If they are not addressing this, either they have their heads in the sand or they are assuming that your retirement will be far in the future. I understand why the family connection makes this an emotionally charged issue for you. Nevertheless, the kindest and most professional thing to do is to set up an appointment with the CEO as soon as possible to discuss your plans. Offer to participate in the recruitment and mentorship of your replacement and give a reasonable time frame, e.g 6 months (maximum acceptable time for hard to replace people). If none of the owners wants to do the training and get licensed, they will have to hire externally. Too bad. That's not your problem.
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Old 09-10-2013, 08:28 AM   #5
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You should not have to plan your life around their poor planning. I would tell them your plans and give them time to come up with a solution. As long as you give them ample time to solve THEIR problem, I wouldn't feel guilty at all about it.
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Old 09-10-2013, 08:59 AM   #6
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You should not have to plan your life around their poor planning. I would tell them your plans and give them time to come up with a solution. As long as you give them ample time to solve THEIR problem, I wouldn't feel guilty at all about it.
+1. Time to put on your big girl pants and have the "talk"!
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:07 AM   #7
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Just found this forum last weekend and am loving it!

I just turned 59, still working in my late husbands family's business. I am not an owner but am one of the holder's of our business license. If I retire someone else will have to take the licensing exam and none of the owners wants to do that. My current husband is 62 and recently retired. It is getting harder and harder for me to go to work everyday but haven't gotten up the courage to bring up the subject of my retirement with the family. My husband and I are financially able for me to retire so I just need to find the "courage" to do it. I really have no idea how they will react and it really is an emotionally charged issue for me.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation.
Welcome aboard, Rena.

No, I haven't been in such a situation.

I noticed that you wrote, "I am not an owner but am one of the holder's of our business license." Which leads me to believe that there may be other holders of the license as well? If so, that should "lighten the load" on you considerably, no?

As others have said, time to have "the talk" and let the family develop a succession plan.

omni
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:14 AM   #8
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Thank you all for your great insight. You all made good points and reaffirmed what I knew but it sure helps to have others viewpoints! Typing on my phone so more later.
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Old 09-10-2013, 07:59 PM   #9
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Thanks again!

I wanted to add, I've been conflicted about the approriate time frame in which to talk to them. I would like to work another 6 to 9 months and at the same time want to give them time to make the changes necessary. Once I open the discussion I have no idea what their reaction will be.....there is always the possibility that they will want me to leave immediately which is financially ok but another 6 months would be better. At this point the fact that this is hanging over my head is causing me more stress than the extra money is worth.

Omni, you are correct in assuming one other person holds the license but he is quite a bit older than me, which is why I was asked to qualify and then sit for the exam.

Rena
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Old 09-10-2013, 08:23 PM   #10
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It does not make sense to me why they would not want you around to train your replacement, if relationships are good, unless there are proprietary secrets. To cover all bases, I suggest that you choose a time when you would not mind waiting another six months but would be okay with leaving immediately. You can't have everything. You must choose. As they say in Ireland: "piss or get off the pot".
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Old 09-11-2013, 04:42 AM   #11
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Meadbh, you nailed it! Piss or get off the pot! Agree, thanks.
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