Business Exit Strategy
Today we’re going to talk about the exit strategy for you and your business.
We’re all racing through our days managing and taking care of family, our business, customers, employees, and vendors, and many of us don’t take the time to think about the bigger picture of where we’re heading too often.
I’m getting older and I’ve been thinking a lot lately about where I want to take my business and what a perfect day looks like.
On our home page, we posted a quote from General George S. Patton, a famous General from World War II.
The quote reads, “Without a plan, you’re just a tourist.” And it really applies to most things in business and life.
If we don’t have an end goal that’s well-defined in our heads and on paper, well, then we’re just wandering around somewhat aimlessly.
Yes, you have your daily operations to plan for and manage.
Hopefully, you have a marketing strategy and are building a culture of excellence and teamwork within your company.
But have you thought about where you’re taking your business?
What are your end goals?
Do you have or even want an exit strategy?
Do you plan to sell the company one day? If so, what is it worth? Have you had it assessed? What assets or systems should you be building to increase its value? Who might you sell it to?
Do you plan for the business to pass to the next generation in your family? How will that work? Have you discussed it with an attorney or with your family?
Maybe you would like to sell the company to one or more key employees at some point. Maybe you would finance that purchase and have a steady income still coming in.
Maybe you just want to sell it for a lump sum in one shot and go about your retirement or other ventures.
Have you thought about it?
Have you discussed any of this with your spouse and family?
Its goal is to do great work and keep attracting new customers but after that is has no direction.
Or are you simply going to close the doors when you’re ready to retire or move into something else?
Everything works better when there is a clear end goal in mind.
It’s okay for those goals to evolve and change over time.
When I started this company, I thought I would just be a solopreneur and keep things simple. I’m getting up there in years and just want to keep life simple.
But that changed over time, and now my stated goal is to turn this company into a non-profit in five years to help less fortunate people. And I’ve hashed out the details of how I want that to happen on pen and paper.
I have a goal, a target, and now everything the company does is working towards that.
So what’s your goal?
Where do you want the company to go when you decide your time with it is over?
Where will the people who take care of your customers and company every day go? What will happen to them?
In summary, your business needs to know where you want to take it. When you think and plan through your exit strategy, the business will have renewed energy and direction, and so will you.
A compass will tell you which way you’re heading, but if you hadn’t chosen a destination, then its value to you is greatly diminished. You’ll know which way you’re heading but not where you’ll end up.
Instead, take control, choose and define your destination and then map out how to get there.