We are still experiencing the waves of disruption caused by the hard trend of baby boomer retirements. Companies and firms are feeling the void as they watch the mass exodus of knowledge, wisdom and experience walk out the front door into retirement. This baby boomer hard trend, as all hard trends do, provides us opportunities also. Besides the opportunities for so many team members to step up in roles and grow exponentially, we have the opportunity to listen and learn as these valuable team members hang up their cleats.
Greg Anderson is one of those giants in our firm. A team member who was always fully committed to the vision and delivering exceptional client service. Greg became such a master at healthcare compensation valuation that professionals around the country would call him to understand his take on physician compensation arrangements and related regulations. Greg was always in high demand as a speaker to share his wisdom on these complex matters.
Today, I wanted us to seize this opportunity to hear from Greg himself, his words of wisdom as he prepares to hang up those cleats.
We have two lives, and the second begins when we realize we only have one. ― Confucius.
First, thank you, Joey, for inviting me to guest blog and for allowing me to share some things from the heart. Now to the punchline: I’m retiring!
In May 2020, while the first wave of COVID-19 was still in full swing, I announced to HORNE executives my intentions to retire (early retirement had always been my goal — it just took me a long time to define “early”). This began a 20-month transition process, which included retirement from partnership back in January, a “part-time” schedule that began in May and coming this December, admission to the world of Baby Boomer retirees. So, yes, after 39 years and 7 months in this career, I’ll be putting away my briefcase. For now, though, I’m sharing a little reminiscence and a lot of gratitude.
My mother reminds me that I decided on the accounting profession at age 8 — yes, I know what you’re thinking. But there’s family history, too. While only a handful are in public practice, an uncle, two cousins, my younger brother, two sisters-in-law, one of my best friends, and my younger daughter all studied accounting. I spent the last four decades practicing in accounting, auditing, taxation and consulting, and I’ve had the privilege of serving governmental agencies, families, entrepreneurs, professional practices and for-profit companies. My greatest pleasure, though, has been working in service of healthcare providers. My mantra: I can’t care for patients, but I can help those who do.
Looking back across my adult life, one of the sweetest reflections is just how many folks influenced me. Sufficiently thanking everyone for their impact on my career would certainly require writing a book, which I’m not in the mood for, so at the risk of excluding someone, I made a list:
- First and foremost, my Lord and Savior, who has done for me far more abundantly beyond all that I can ask or think.
- My wife and daughters for unconditional love and countless examples of support and confidence in me
- Hugh Parker, first, my college professor who encouraged me to interview with HORNE, and later, one of my business partners
- Roy Ward, a founding father of the Firm, who gave me a chance at age 25 and was an early influence in my career
- Joey Havens, a once-in-a-lifetime mentor, teacher, motivator, and accountability partner who believed in me and not-so-gently nudged me toward the healthcare industry
- Kathy Watts, my foremost encourager with the highest EQ of anyone I know
- My business partners at HORNE, past and present, who trusted and supported me in our work together
- The Firm’s clients, whom I’ve been profoundly honored to serve
- Many friends in health law, who are easily among the very best in the legal profession
- Countless colleagues I’ve encountered in four decades of practice
The question I most often hear naturally relates to my future plans. In short, traveling, giving back, enjoying the car hobby, reading subjects other than business, doing DIY projects, and supporting my wife’s continuing career — a small concession given the many years she’s supported mine.
A second question usually follows: Do I have any words of wisdom? Of course I do! First, decide who you are and who you want to be, and picture yourself there. Whatever you do, do it heartily as to the Lord. Listen to others who have been there, and help others along the journey. Reinvent and reinvest in yourself constantly. Work your butt off. Figure out what you learned in the process. Do it all in a spirit of love, joy, grace and gratitude. These may seem cliché; as for me, they are rock-solid truths.
So long. I wish you the best in all you do. And let’s keep in touch — I have more time for social media now.
Thanks, Greg, so much for sharing, for your words of wisdom to help us #beEvenBetter and for your heart of service. Congrats and God bless.