By September, both of my children will have flown the nest (at least for a while).

Which means that for the first time in about 20 years, I’ll have ALL of my waking hours free of commitments.

It sounds fantastic, but I’m under no illusions that I could get a bit bored, so I’ve been creating a list of things to do when the freedom really kicks in.

And as well as getting into chess again and a transatlantic cruise, I’ve decided to get back into Guiding.

I’ve been involved with Guiding since the age of 7, with all the ribbons to prove it.

Once adulthood kicked in, I carried on leading groups until the pressures of parenting and business meant I had to take a break in 2014.

But with all this free time coming my way, it’s time to return, so I contacted the local group and they were delighted to have a volunteer.

As it’s been so long out, I’ve got some retraining to do, which I was happy to take on, expecting to have to traipse around the country to do it face-to-face, as it always used to be.

Not anymore.  Things have moved on a lot in 7 years, and not only is there now a centralised database system to use for all the girls’ details, there’s also an e-learning site so leaders can train from wherever suits them.

In the past, so much of the Guiding knowledge relied on oral tradition, but not anymore – anything you need has been catalogued and is available at the touch of a button.

There’s a big point to mull on here for all business owners and it’s the question of just how dependent your business is on specific people who hold specific knowledge.

If something happened to you, or a key member of staff, could the business keep functioning?

Is it easy for new members of staff to get up to speed, and can they access systems, processes and ways of doing things without relying on specific people?

And if not, what needs to change for that to happen?

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