Founder & Head Strategist
My life’s work is to help business owners transition their companies to successors because I know how transitions affect families, companies, employees, vendors, customers, and ultimately communities. When a transition is successful, everyone benefits. When it’s not, people can be harmed, and some of the damage is unrepairable. The tragedy is that transitions need not fail: There are principles and a process owners can use to maximize the odds of success.
I found my vocation through experience, natural wiring, and a desire to do what I love. I’ve always been wired to construct strategies. I remember my dad handing me a list of errands when I was just a kid and within a few seconds, I’d map out the plan for the day. Later I figured out how to navigate a challenging college petroleum engineering curriculum while competing for the school’s ski team and enjoying an active social life. Supervising well drilling and later helping companies create and execute strategies that motivated people to change their behavior were natural fits for me.
While running my own succession planning consultants company, I learned through the experience of my then-husband how quickly a company can go under compared to how long it takes to dig out, and how the health of a business impacts the relationships of the people running it. I experienced the sinking feeling that comes with “What are we going to do now?” and the regret of “That didn’t have to happen.”
In my career I’ve helped hundreds of families and organizations transition, and now I’m experiencing that challenge personally and professionally. My parents have transferred the responsibility for running their ranch to my brother and me. All of us are cautiously navigating the tricky no man’s land between “We’ve always done it this way” and “Let’s try something new,” and my brother and I are learning to work together on a project that’s hugely valuable to all of us. We are charting a path forward through compromise, intentional communication and always assuming the other has the best of intent.
I’m also negotiating transition in my company. I’ve always dreamed of creating a community of multi-talented experts that would be a richer resource for clients than I could ever be on my own. The first step was to document the transition process that I created and finetuned over the past 30 years. The second was to create a comprehensive training program, then recruit and mentor highly talented and experienced Guides. Today, our company is growing. I’m grateful for each team member and confident that as a community our talent pool is deeper than ever. Our clients are amazing, and I love what we do together. My Next Adventure is to support our Guides and create the vision for this new phase of our company.
I love to help families and companies do well. It’s fun to help people think in new ways and see situations from fresh perspectives. It’s fun to help people achieve outcomes that they never thought possible. It’s fun to work with successful, smart, generous people who are willing to put people first as they plan and embark on one of their most important journeys—the transition out of the businesses they’ve built and into the next great adventure of their lives. It’s fun, it’s humbling, it’s challenging, and it matters. I can’t think of a better way to spend my life.