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When to retire?
A friend of mine who has had a business in York for 35 years but has no succession within the family, nor staff who want to take the business on because it’s not a simple thing to do without risk, is now faced with no option but to close the doors. It’s such a shame as he doesn’t really want to, and his customers don’t want him to either - he doesn’t want to feel like he is deserting his customers, but he doesn’t have an option.
It is just another issue which I never considered 8 years’ ago, but hopefully I won’t have to worry about it, as my son Sam will be coming to work at Luscombe’s in January, although that’s no guaranteed solution!
It isn’t like just retiring from your job, which is bad enough - Take Stuart Tillotson who was with me here since the start and worked with me for 28 years prior to that – his age, grandchildren and travelling from Steeton near Keighley every day have helped him decide to retire, but fortunately for both of us, he is keeping his hand in doing a few jobs from home and a bit of holiday cover, so he keeps an interest and I enjoy the benefit of him keeping an eye on the business.
But sadly my friend in York will have to close the doors of his business, make his staff redundant, and that’s not a nice way to end after such a long time. Like ourselves he has made customers and staff his friends, so unlike the usual problem of finding something to do when you retire, he is concerned for the staff and the customers who miss out. Fortunately we can help his customers as we have a few staff who travel from York to Leeds daily, so we have offered to collect and deliver his customers’ Suzuki cars for service and warranty work, but unfortunately we don’t have jobs for all his staff – but at least we can assure him that his customers will be well looked after.
Hopefully I will be fortunate, and my son will earn the respect of the staff and work his way around the company to learn the ropes and then we will have options, either the managers can group together or he can carry on the business - either way it safeguards all the jobs, and gives continuity for everyone, even me - but that’s just another one of those things you don’t think of when starting out.
Retirement really is a subject that is so personal, some can’t wait to retire, and have enjoyed it from early 50s, others can’t imagine life without work, either for themselves or their employees - and it’s such a good job we don’t all want the same, some people want time, some money, some to travel, some to stay put, but there’s one thing we all need and money can’t buy it, although a good lifestyle can help, and that’s health, so whatever it is you want, look after your health, and then do whatever suits you!
“Wishing you all the best Andy after looklng after the customers and staff at Glen Garage York for 35 years!” Robin Luscombe
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