When is it time to develop an exit strategy?
If you are a business owner between the ages of 55 and 75 and have yet to begin planning for a future transition, you are among the vast majority. But don’t be fooled thinking there’s strength in those numbers.
If the millions of businesses needing to transition in the next 5 to 10 years all decide to sell around the same time, what will that do to the value of your enterprise?
Like all the owners I’m working with today, you may be asking, “How do I differentiate my business to appeal to the right buyer?”
If you know you’re going to sell outside to a third party, it’s essential for you to start developing an exit strategy, build a stronger company, and work on increasing its value right now.
Plan Your Growth and Exit Strategies
Nearly every owner I have ever worked with said they wanted to get top dollar for their business, yet most of them don’t have the proper growth and exit strategies in place that would warrant a top-dollar offer.
When we have the time to implement strategies to grow and improve, we nearly always increase the value of the company. The net result being the owners have control over their own destiny.
For owners who don’t have the time it takes to do this, due to unforeseen triggering events (like an illness, death, or disagreement among owners), they end up at the mercy of whatever the market dictates. They don’t tend to exit on their own terms.
They haven’t put the right growth and exit strategies in place to foster and increase enterprise value. Now they’re forced to make tough decisions that will negatively affect their families, employees, and communities.
Without developing an exit strategy focused on growth and improvement, these owners are at the mercy of the buyer.
Developing an Exit Strategy that Builds Value
So what can you do while you still have time to make an impact on your company’s value?
First, understand what drives value; then include these value and growth tactics into your exit strategy.
- Marketing strategy for exit planning
- Cash in the bank
- Accurate financials
- Consistent brand message
- Consistent sales supported by marketing
- Effective leadership
- Documented processes and systems
- Well-developed culture that supports a loyal, hardworking team
Sound like paradise? It’s quite attainable. It all starts with intention and massive, immediate action.
Start Your Marketing Exit Plan Now for Top Dollar Later
If you’re planning to sell your business in the next 5 to 10 years, now is the time to start planning. You have everything to gain and so much to lose; why would you wait any longer?
Start your exit plan with a goal-specific marketing strategy. We developed the perfect guide for you and your business.
Download our marketing guide and learn how to:
- Grow your business
- Build enterprise value
- Get top dollar for your business
About the Author
Julie Keyes is the founder and owner of KeyeStrategies, LLC and has been an entrepreneur for the majority of her life. As the founder and operator of several companies, she understands what keeps an owner up at night and the balancing act required to work both ‘in’ and ‘on’ the business. Having outside perspective and mentoring made all the difference for her, as she spent years growing and improving her companies before selling and becoming a business adviser in 2011.
As a Certified Exit Planning Advisor and Value Growth Adviser, she works with business owners who seek to understand and maximize their exit and critical transition options. She is President Emeritus of the Exit Planning Institute Twin Cities Metro Area Chapter and a faculty member for their CEPA Program. In addition, Julie was awarded EPI’s 2017 “Leader of Year.” Her speaking engagements bring her across the country delivering her exit planning expertise to owner and adviser groups alike.