After you sell your accounting practice, then what?

After you sell your accounting practice, then what?

So let’s say you sell your accounting practice … then what? It’s one of those questions that is so simple, but sometimes very hard to answer. We speak with people daily that are considering retirement. As you might imagine, we get a lot of different answers.

For some, the answer is very clear. They have been planning for years or circumstances dictate that they sell for various reasons. For most though, the thought of this new chapter in life brings mixed feelings.  One of the problems many practice owners face is that they work … sometimes work too much. They may have reached burn-out and know what they don’t want to do. They don’t want to keep working in public accounting because the thought of another tax season is just too much to bear. They just “can’t want to” keep going as they have.

The problem is that owning a practice and working so much has prevented them from from being able to focus on what they want to do after selling their practice.

So what are you going to do with your days? Many haven’t really stopped to imagine…really envision “What will I do on a Monday morning when I don’t have a practice to go to?” That can be a daunting realization. How you feel about that challenge can tell you a lot about your readiness to sell. If you have no answer, it can be a signal that you might not quite be ready yet.

Having this question on your mind for a while can help you to answer it creatively and positively. Play around with this question before seriously exploring a sale.

A few things I’ve noticed in talking with people who have sold. Sometime, owners’ calendars become fuller in retirement than when they were working. It usually takes a few months. Sometimes people wish they had sold years before. Other times, people bump into new careers that are more fulfilling and more profitable than they had imagined while in public accounting.

One thing is for sure … the additional clarity you will no doubt get from thinking about this question will give you some energy you didn’t know you had; either energy to clean up any messes in your practice and make your practice work for you … or the energy to pursue your next big dream.

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