Selling a business can be the largest and most important deal of an entrepreneur’s career. Yet, most business owners prepare very little if at all. In the best of all worlds, the owner begins to prepare his or her business for sale a year or two in advance. Records should clearly document all transactions so that potential buyers can easily evaluate the company and so that a new manager can take over with minimal training.
The most important single factor in preparing your business for sale is to eliminate yourself as the most necessary employee of the company. You should not be the only member of the team with relationships with customers or perform a critical function with no backup.
Recently, I encountered a business owner who would like to sell his business so he can retire. When I told him the value of his business he expressed disappointment and asked what he could do. I advised him to set up his business so that a new owner could step in and begin to manage the company without risk of losing revenue and having to rebuild.
I have stayed in touch with this potential client and found that he has taken my advice. He has added a designer to do most of the creative work historically done by the owner and a sales manager to help grow the business. For this business owner, the value of his business is an important component of his retirement plan. He will do what is necessary to ensure his financial future.
By: John Calia, The Bradway Group