I've got the George Baily complex--should I run my father's long-running business even though I don't want to?
Do you take over a business that has had some success in its 25 years of business even though your heart isn't into it, or go totally into a business that could be a big hit in your area?
My father started a home improvement business 25 years ago that has had good years and bad years (more bad than good), built a strong name in community, but does not have a lot of workers, leads or business coming in. Some say that I could take the business to different heights, but my heart is not into the business. I'm only good at the selling part of it. I want to open my own business or franchise in my area. What do I do?
Wow . . . a lot of emotional decisions to make, on which I am no expert.
On the business side though, my suggestion is to run the existing company, turn it into something great and then sell it and fund your new idea. Remember: The biggest challenge with running a family business is the question of whether senior family members let you run it as your own.
If not, then go do your own thing.
From a pure financial viewpoint, you will generally make a lot more money a lot faster over-hauling an existing average business than you will starting something from scratch.
All the Best
Tim Berry is the chairman of Eugene, Ore.-Palo Alto Software
, which produces business-planning software,