Dan Hall, CBI, CMEA
M&A Source Chairman, 2009
In looking back at the time I spent in leadership within the IBBA and then the M&A Source, there are many good memories and occasions that I am proud to have been a part of.
I was invited to serve as Chair of the M&A Source for the year of 2009 having recently completed a term as Chair of the IBBA. At that time, I was looking forward to rebuilding a bank account instead of building my frequent flyer mileage account. Having been a sole practitioner for several years before serving as the IBBA Chair, I had learned how to keep the deal pipeline full and had completed some transactions. When my personal time adjusted to more service related activities, the pipeline turned into a trickle and my faithful supportive wife began to raise an eyebrow at the state of the bank account. Looking back, I should have probably allowed that critical phone call to go to voicemail that asked if I would allow my name to be nominated as Chair of the M&A Source.
Having pulled back from the day-to-day undercurrent of the associations following my IBBA stint, I did not realize the real purpose for my invitation. A serious division of opinions had occurred, as the M&A Source leadership began to make moves to separate from the IBBA. Apparently, a contentious meeting had occurred which resulted with several very capable prospective leaders of the M&A Source throwing in the towel and walking away from the fray. Some lucky soul was needed at the last minute to fill the ballot and to mend wounds and attitudes and to foster the notion that the M&A Source would be a better organization if it were separate and apart from the IBBA.
It was into that situation that I stepped in, as I had forgotten that leadership opportunities can be satisfying but not always personally profitable. Many hours of conference calls, email exchanges, planning meetings and other activities consumed my time when I could have been meeting the needs of my clients and customers. I recall the many hours of discussion and planning undertaken by MASTF (what a clever acronym!) as we worked to forge a new organization that would allow the M&A Source autonomous operations and a distinct separation from the IBBA.
It was during this time of internal planning and discussion that I realized that the majority of the membership was not affected on a daily basis by our discussions. The membership needed some sense of value for their membership dollar that would impact their practices, and they needed it now. It was from this point that the concept of the M&A Source webinar was developed. At the outset, a monthly webinar was developed at no cost to the membership or organization whereby two to three subject matter experts could opine on the designated subject for 60 minutes, which hopefully would provide value to the audience.
Time has a way of fogging one's memory of many details, but 2009 for me was a good year. Obviously, the M&A Source did not and has not become a free standing operating entity as we had planned and discussed, but the organization survived and remains intact. In hindsight, staying alive as an organization beats the alternative.