Why You Need to Prepare Now for the Inevitable Transition

Handing off the reins of the business to the next generation is a bittersweet thought process, and it's possible your existing management staff is not adequately prepared to take over for you.

Handing off the reins of the business to the younger generation is a bittersweet thought process. Some of the rental business owners I work with describe themselves as “burned out” and are eager for the day they no longer have the pressure of the business. Others want to stay involved in the business but come in as much or as little as they want. Perhaps surprisingly, many never want to give it up completely but want to transition the day-to-day operation of the business to someone else when the time is right. Most of the rental business owners who have had me assist them to plan and implement growth strategies still have rental energy flowing in their blood.

It's possible your existing management staff is not adequately prepared to take over for you. Are your supervisors proficient at “rallying the troops”? Are they really good at nipping staff negativity in the bud? Do they consistently use good judgment when dealing with other employees? Are they really good at assigning tasks to subordinates and do your supervisors make completion of those tasks happen? Are they good teachers and coaches?

Preparing the next generation now for a successful transition is important. Many managers are not true leaders and most lack critical delegation skills. It would be wise to have a structured management training process to gradually prepare the company’s leaders to successfully operate and grow the business instead of just handing them the reins. This training is vitally important to protect your investment in the business and to make the transition successful.   

Some managers may have the potential to be effective leaders but haven’t had the formal, higher-level management foundations training. Many rental business owners are frustrated with their manager’s lack of management skills and some feel that there is nothing that will help. 

I have found that the very best way to train rental business managers and other supervisors is when the training is conducted at the rental company and specifically for that one company. Managers need the structured education that empowers them to plan, organize, direct and control in a much more effective way. Managers, for example, need to learn how to delegate effectively. Many, if not most rental business managers are very frustrated in not knowing how to effectively handle a wide variety of the duties you want and need them to be proficient in. I have found that one of the primary reasons that rental business owners are feeling “burned out” is that they are handling far too many of the day-to-day operational issues that should be handled by managers.

Managers also need to learn to become great leaders and become proficient in the areas of employee hiring, motivation, training and supervision. Many rental business owners have been without a manager possessing leadership skills for so long that the owner might have forgotten what those who have those skills are capable of accomplishing in their business. Some rental business owners may also feel that developing the needed leadership skills is impossible. Often it is possible to develop solid leadership skills in existing employees. Sometimes, however, starting with someone else in a management trainee position is the best way to proceed. It is important to have an experienced objective rental business consultant and rental business leadership trainer analyze your existing staff and make recommendations. It is very difficult for a rental business owner to objectively analyze the leadership skill level and the potential for those in their own company – especially people who they have known for years. Sometimes it is difficult to uncover the possibilities when one is in close daily contact with the people.

Effective delegation and leadership training have a profound and lasting effect on the growth and profitability of a company. Delegation and leadership training will help you (and those who work for you in supervisory positions) to prepare for the inevitable handoff of your business - and this training will make your business become much more profitable and enjoyable.

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