What happens when your business starts running you…
After 6 years of throwing myself wholeheartedly into my business, I am now ready to step away and see if it has legs of its own. The things that I own have ended up owning me and I am just a little worn out. My son has also left home so freedom beckons.
My movement into my holiday let business 6 years ago was prompted from my exit from my teaching career and desire to create something new and interesting to occupy my mind. It has done just that, all day, and sometimes all night too! It has gone from first tentative steps, running a hotel, renovating constantly and setting up new holiday lets (and closing down those less successful), navigating lockdown and then getting involved in the disability sector. I have built an established and successful enterprise. I have renovated all my tired rental properties, hosted hundreds of guests and made many new friends in the process. I am now stepping away from hands-on management and dismantling my work activities in order to…seek new challenges perhaps? Not yet, first a serious break!
Exiting a business is a bit daunting, but life has taken a different turn and I have the urge to explore the world for a bit. I have wound back the tasks that I perform, while still here, handing over most things to my assistant (now The Manager). I have spent 2 evenings deleting facebook contacts and will spend the next week putting files in order so that my systems are clear for anyone to pick up, I will check up carefully on each property for jobs left undone and paperwork incomplete. In this process I can see so much room for improvement in how I have done things. The need for lists, calendars and written systems has come. I no longer want to be a 'key man', but to just have oversight of the processes involved. I have a 7-day countdown to handing over the 'business phone' and relying solely on my secret holiday phone, connected only to friends and family. A certain amount of ego likes to think that you are indispensable but, of course, that is not so. Whether the business does better or worse without me will be for others to manage.
I will be following a well- trodden path and travelling for a while. I have purchased a lovely converted fire service vehicle as my new mobile home and will spend the Summer and Autumn exploring Europe as the mood takes me...No doubt I will stop at a few Airbnb places along the way and try my very best not to look for dust, assess the facilities or criticise the host. Just take a deep breath and relax!
Exiting a business and going travelling should be a transformative and rewarding experience. With planning and emotional preparation, it should offer a great opportunity for personal growth. If you fancy doing similar remember to stay true to yourself, stay organised and embrace the journey ahead.