What is Your Point B?

March 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

I recently attended a session in the ongoing MS in Executive Leadership Breakfast series, entitled “Exit Strategy and Succession Planning – From Plan to Execution” presented by Bob Gellman, managing director of CBIZ MHM, LLC and author of Seven Keys to Unlocking the Door to your Dreams.  The essence  of his message was that most people have not given serious thought to aligning their professional goals with their personal goals.  You, the person, are going to be the end point of each, yet, if the decisions you are making professionally, are not taking you in the direction you want to go personally, you may learn that too late to make corrections. 

He told a number of stories of people who had made a series of short term decisions that advantaged their business or professional life, but took them away from where they really wanted to be in their personal lives.   His point:  If we do not think about our long term ‘Point B’ (see the attached slide from his presentation) and do not think about what that looks and feels like, and and if we do not build that vision into our business, professional and financial decision makking, we are much less likely to arrive at that retirement or late-life career that we really want.  

Bob Gellman (safely) assumes that most of us would eventually like to be in a position where we don’t have to work, and we have the time and financial independence to do what we feel like doing.  He had pictures of yachts in crystal blue bays in the Caribbean…. I suppose he could have contrasted that image with pictures of guys or gals driving to work in their late sixties or seventies, sitting behind a desk, or on the phone, in a cubicle or an office.

His presentation made the distinction between Business Choices and Personal Choices.  His was a call to self awareness and aligning personal and professional goal setting.   As an accountant and financial manager he works with individuals and business owners to think about their dreams for ‘what next,’ and figure out how to effectively plan their business and financial portfolio.  He warned against making business decisions that may seem right at the time, but take us away from the  Point B we want when we are ready to go on to ‘whatever’s next.’

This was another fascinating MSEL sponsored breakfast presentation, and I was impressed with Bob Gellman’s detailed insight – that’s his job as an accountant and financial planner– but also it was valuable to hear him stressing of the importance of thinking about one’s life in the aggregate and the long term – that appealed to the Aristotelian in me.

Bob Schoultz is the Director for the MS in Global Leadership program at the University of San Diego.  You can read his blog at Bob’s Corner.

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