Prepare as much as you can before you start the business sale process

Why is it that when the time comes to sell our businesses, so many of us leave money on the table? What are we — or aren’t we — doing that causes this? It’s hard to believe that a simple shift in focus can help us get what we deserve when we sell our enterprises.

I interviewed, Ryan Moran on the Life After Business Podcast and he shares details how he got the eight-figure settlement we all wish for.

You Are the Prize

True story. You are the one they sought out — among all the others — and offered a deal to. This means that what you have, they want. And they’re willing to pay for it! So knowing that they know that you have value… shouldn’t that make you value your company all the more?

This doesn’t mean you need to ask more for your company. This means you need to stand by what you asked for. If you’re getting the run-around on your final numbers and terms, you may want to say no to the deal. Don’t give your company away for a check. Chances are, if you stick to your guns, you’ll get the terms and conditions you want.

Prepare Yourself

There is a whole slew of information out there on when to sell. While the actual timing may be in question, the preparation for the sale is not. One of the best pieces of advice Ryan gives us today is to prepare as much as you can before you start the sales process… mostly because he didn’t do any preparation before he sold his company!

There’s so much involved in a sale. From the choice of buyer to how the company will continue to operate, you don’t want to leave anything you care about to chance at the negotiating table. Start your exit process as early as possible by considering first what would incite you to sell your company at all. Once you can think of why you’d sell, you can launch into the particulars like when, to whom or for how much.

For Ryan, it was the how much. When he eventually did sell his company, he did very well. He secured eight figures for himself from the sale of the company. And yet, Ryan suggests thoroughly preparing your paperwork and sticking by it. Anything you don’t ask for or don’t insist on, you won’t get. Buyers have their own agendas, so while you can you should be preparing the legally-binding documents to better reflect what you want out of the sale.

This means finding the best advisors for you and your company. The time you take to find the right person for the job will come back to you during negotiations. They can also help you figure out exactly what you need added or removed from the terms and conditions based on your lifestyle and goals — they’ll think of things you haven’t because they’ve been in this situation before. The sale of your business may be the biggest transaction of your life, so you should be as prepared for it as possible.

Long-Term Game

Ryan also said that he plays the long game. He never settles for short-term gains, but always plays for long-term success. It’s always brought him success, in all areas of life. Playing the long game gives you time to prepare for contingencies and eventualities which otherwise would force your hand sooner than you like.

In terms of business decisions, jumping onto the newest band wagon isn’t the strongest business model. While there are definite gains to be made by getting in on a rising trend, it’s important not to lose sight of your end goals while doing so. Sometimes that tempting detour will take you so far off course that you can’t correct it before it has significant impact on your life.

So keeping in mind what you want to see from the sale of your company, are you prepared if a buyer were to send you an attractive offer? Are you satisfied with the terms and conditions? Now’s the time to implement some changes.