You’ve come to the point where you know it is time to sell your business and, naturally, you’re concerned about passing the baton. You may be asking, “How will I ever find the next ‘me’ to run this business?” A good first step in finding the best buyer for your business is being prepared for that buyer. That preparation is twofold. It involves defining your intangibles and gathering your tangibles.
1. Define Your Intangibles
It’s relatively easy to decide what your asking price for your business will be. It is also likely that there will be a few who will offer you that amount.
But true success in selling your business lies beyond that transactional decision – it lies in a transitional decision.
Being prepared for the right buyer includes knowing what that buyer could look like. It involves specifically and intentionally defining the non-financial criteria that matter to you.
These criteria are different for every seller. If you don’t take time to define the intangible criteria for your sale, you may end up getting the money you want but seeing your business end up in a place you didn’t envision.
2. Gather Your Tangibles
To be your ideal buyer’s ideal seller you need to be (yep- you guessed it) prepared.
You can win a lot of points with a potential buyer when you show up ready and well equipped for the dealmaking process.
You’ll impress those on the other side of the table when your tangible documents- like tax returns and insurance forms- are ready and waiting. There’s an added bonus to being on top of the items needed for due diligence.
Neither of these things will be easy. It all involves time, thoughtfulness and intentionality. But, as usual, the hard thing is often the right thing.