We are often asked the following question by business owners when we meet with them privately at our Growth and Exit Planning Conferences:
But if I sell my business, what will I do for the rest of my life?
Our answer to that question is always the same: Whatever you want to do!
Imagine this – if someone gave you $5 million dollars (tax-free of course), what would you do with it and, more importantly, what would you spend your time doing with it?
Of course, the answer to this varies depending on who you are and where you are in your journey in life. For many of our younger clients, they take the proceeds of the sale and re-invest in a new business venture. Many of our older clients decide to simply retire and spend time with the family and get reacquainted with their hobbies. Others pursue charity work or travel extensively.
There is no right answer to this question – but the importance of it is critical to each business owner.
Because someday you will exit your business…
You will either do so under your own terms, under your own timing, OR you will do so when circumstances force you to and you are facing timing that is far from optimal.
So, you need to consider in your own life, the range of options you want to pursue.
Recently our friends with Vistage (the world’s largest CEO coaching and peer advisory organization for small and midsize businesses, and an organization which we have a National Strategic Alliance with) published a wonderful article based on three of their members and what each of them was doing post-business sale. You can read each of their stories here:
As you will learn when you read their piece, each of these three business owners has pursued completely different lives after selling their businesses. This simply points out just how unique each of us are: We all have varied hopes and dreams and plans of self-fulfillment…
So again, I ask you: What do you want to do with your life post business sale?
I have the privilege of meeting with and interviewing many of our clients after their transition to their new lives. The common theme is this: “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”
Here are a few of their thoughts on transitioning to their next phase:
As you can hear and see, each of these business owners has their own “post-close” story about why they moved on, what they are doing now, and what they dream of doing in the years to come. After what we have all gone through in 2020, especially business owners who have had to create innovative strategies to keep moving forward, isn’t it time that you consider where you want your next journey to take you?
If you are considering an exit in the next 5 years or even earlier, the sooner you create an exit plan and have a path ensured, the sooner you can then turn your mind to what YOU want to do with the rest of YOUR life!
Our M&A professionals (many of whom consider themselves family counselors just as much as dealmakers) have successfully guided over 1,000 folks just like you to the next stage. Are you interested in seeing if we can do the same for you?
Carl Doerksen is the Director of Corporate Development at Generational Equity.
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