The Cost of Delaying Half-Retirement

by | Apr 21, 2018

Maybe your life is different than mine? As a business owner, I always feel like there are 50 things to do and time to do only ten of them. I have been known to say, “I will/should do XYZ,” and never have the time to get around to it. Fortunately, most business initiatives won’t make or break a business. However, Half-Retirement is not one of those “aw-shucks, I missed it” priorities.

Don’t let your Half-Retirement be an item that gets relegated to the bottom of your list. The costs of delay are simply too high. I’ve seen too many 64-year-old business owners get gun-ho  about Half-Retiring  only to find them in the exact same position three years later.

It’s one thing to be a 50-year-old business owner, slaving away every day. It’s another thing to be a 67-year-old….68-year-old…69-year-old business owner punching the clock every day. When you are talking about your retirement, there is no delay button. It’s a fuse that’s already lit. The question isn’t, “Will the bomb go off?” The question is, “Will I work faster than the fuse burns?” Work too slowly and the Crummy Retirement Bomb goes off.


It’s hard to carve out time to work on Half-Retirement when you have day-to-day responsibilities. You have to find a way to progress towards retirement or you will pay a steep price in these areas:

  • Engaging fully in the Half-Retire process tends to make businesses more profitable as systems are tightened, people are better leveraged, and strengths are emphasized.
  • Quality of life. Our families have sacrificed a lot due to our businesses. We need to make sure there are no broken promises to our significant others, kids, grand kids, friends and most important, to yourself. You have worked hard; it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
  • Don’t ask how many times we have heard a business owners say, “I promised my spouse that we would take a two week trip to Italy, but I just can’t . . .” Every delay seems like a broken promise to your family and friends.
  • You want to enjoy Half-Retirement. If you drift into slow-motion mode for retirement, frustration may grow. That’s a heavy emotional price to pay. Instead, just get to it.
  • Loss of good employees. This is another unintended consequence we see. A business owner gets excited about the prospect of Half-Retirement and shares the plan with key employees. They discuss the expanded role of the employees and the employees are energized. Then the business owner goes into slow-motion mode on the Half-Retirement Plan, and the employees get frustrated. We have even seen situations where key employees quit due to this frustration. (article should I tell my EEs about h/r)

Don’t let the time ‘fuse”  burn faster than your Half-Retirement progress.  The simplest step you can take is to join the online Half-Retire Mastermind Group. You can team up with other Half-Retiring business owners and make the journey together.

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