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What Is the Official Exit Planning Process?

Posted by Lassiter Mason in Articles

In a previous blog, we discussed the benefits of exit planning. The exit planning process does not have to be difficult, but it’s something that far too many company owners ignore.

Exit planning is crucial for making a transition out of your business because it is likely to happen at one stage or another and yet far too many otherwise successful business owners miss out on the opportunity of exit planning, exposing them to significant problems when it is time to make a transition.

The process of exit planning will look different from one company to another but this is a comprehensive task that should be undertaken with great care. Several common steps can be found throughout many different exit planning strategies. These include:

  • Determining the ultimate goals and objectives of the individual owner.
  • Identifying the resources, both personal and business, that the individual has at their disposal.
  • Identifying most common contingency plans likely to be triggered to ensure that the company can be transitioned in any event, such as the sudden disability of the owner or the sudden desire of the owner to exit.
  • Maximizing all value within the business until the owner has made the final decision to sell.
  • Enabling strategies and processes to effectively transfer the business to a new owner when it is sold.
  • Finalizing the aid, transfer or management of all appropriate documentation while also ensuring that the owner is protected from problems, mistakes or confusion that could jeopardize the sale altogether.
  • Implementing plans for a successful leadership transfer including identifying whether additional employees need to be trained or brought into the company and identifying opportunities for business continuity.
  • Advising the new owner post-sale as necessary and finalizing details.

All of these elements of passing on your business can be very difficult to understand on your own. Establishing a rapport with an experienced website broker is the first step in identifying what you need to do to carefully consider your own individual concerns. Business exit planning is a crucial aspect of developing a long term plan for your individual business and needs but if you don’t have an established relationship with a business broker you can trust, you’ll leave yourself open to making significant mistakes.

These mistakes can be easily avoided when you have the support of an attorney and other business professionals such as a business broker. Business exit planning is something too many people think about after the fact when there has already been an emergency or a sudden development in the company that means they must reconsider what to do next.

These problems can all be easily avoided by retaining the services of a business broker who is familiar with every aspect of the business sale process and valuation of the company all the way through to the effective transfer of that business to the new owner.

With you having such a high personal stake in selling and transferring your business to someone new, it is imperative that you have an established relationship with a business broker who is highly familiar with this landscape and the common pitfalls.