Exit Strategy Planning
There comes a time to think about selling your business, stepping back or transferring it to the next generation
If you want to get the best outcome for your sale or transfer, a lot of planning needs to be done in advance.
Have you considered what you want to get out of this, and when you want to do it? Do you know who’s going to take it over? Do you have a greater legacy for the business, your community or the world at large that you need to achieve?
The best time to think about this was when you first considered it – but the second best time is now!
What’s In it For You?
Exiting a business means different things to everyone, and each business owner has their own reasons for moving on.
Every reason for exit planning needs a different type of plan, such as to maximise the value for sale, or to take you out of the day-to-day running of the business. However, you’ve still got a business to run – how will you make this happen? This is where we help.
Addressing The Challenges
Whatever your reasons for exiting you will have a list of challenges ahead of you that need to be addressed to allow you to exit successfully.
Cashing in – Challenges in selling your business
You may have an amount you are looking for in your head and a date you wish to exit, however, you need to find a buyer willing to pay you what you are looking for. How do you find them and how do you engage them discreetly, and should you have more than one prospective buyer?
Your buyer wants a business that can run without you – otherwise, they are just buying a job. Sadly, many find themselves handcuffed to their business for a 3 year buy out period and their end payout tied to business retention and growth projections. A stressful place you do not want to be.
You need to ensure you have raised your company valuation to your desired level. What should you focus on to do this, increased assets, increased revenues or reduced costs? How do you decide where to focus your efforts in the years leading up to your exit?
Easing off – Challenges in moving to a passive income
If you are not leading the company who is? What is certain in business is that successful companies have someone leading the way, driving sales, motivating the team and taking responsibility for the finance.
When you step back how will everyone know what to do? Not just the day to day business activities but the strategic planning, deciding on new markets, investment decisions and hiring the right people. How will you ensure the successful culture you have established remains without you?
What will you do to future proof sales and cash flow? The last thing you want is to have to come out of your semi-retirement to bolster sales and ensure all salaries are paid each month.
Passing the baton – Challenges in succession planning
As you hand over the reigns of the business your first question may be around who? Is it a family member(s) or one or more of your management team? Do they want to take over and what can, and can’t they do?
Like many business owners, you will be currently wearing several hats such as MD, sales, finance and more. Can one person replace you and still do the job to the standard you did? Are they happy to work the hours you did? They may perceive the role as easy watching you do it every day but the reality is not always this.
Whilst all this is going on you have to consider the morale of the team as the new leader steps up, and you step down. On top of this, you need to take care of customer relations where you have the relationship, and they may not want to speak to anyone else.
Enough is enough – Challenges to exiting a stressful business
Has the time come you need to throw in the towel? Years of hard work and long hours have worn you down. Pressures from customers, suppliers, staff and money have become too much.
The trouble is, a fast exit might mean all that blood sweat and tears over the years were for very little return. You are wondering how you can exit, save face and make a little money?
So how do you find the time and headspace to get done what is needed to deliver something for all those years? What needs to be done first and how can you accelerate your departure?
Steps To A Successful Exit
A successful exit can be easy if you know the right path to take. However, you first need to know where you’re going. We work with you to develop your strategic plan.
Traditional business planning isn’t going to get you there. A 90 day plan doesn’t cut it. A small increase in sales or profit is not going to double your sale value. Just handing over the office keys does not prepare your team or family to take over.
Our approach to getting you on the right path is the Concord method.
Starting from understanding what you (and others) want to achieve from the exit, it delivers an explicit plan, increases the value of your business, and gets everyone from employees to family behind making it happen. You will be pleased to hear, we do the heavy lifting for you.
Our Exit Planning Process
1. GOALS – Clarifying what exit means to you
You will gain real clarity on what your end goal looks like. Who will be driving your company (succession planning), what new markets you will be in and what will drive real value?
2. PLAN – A simple one page strategic plan to achieve your exit
Together, we will tell a story that shows how you exited your business. Built by working backwards from your end goal, it will show all the steps needed for you to achieve a successful exit in the quickest, best value way.
3. MONEY – Making money, how you build value (and manage risk)
Concord is a process that leaves no stone unturned and clarifies what will drive real value in your company with projections even the pickiest of buyers have to agree with.
4. PEOPLE – Engaging your team to deliver your plan and beyond
Putting in place a system that genuinely passes responsibility, and decision making, to your team. A system that focuses on outcome management rather than line management and transforms your culture for the better.