The Good News and Bad News of Selling Your Business in a Post-Corona World.
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Why Are So Many Business Owners Afraid of the G– Word?

Wilson (not his real name) took over management of the company from his father, who founded it in 1978. Over the five years Wilson has been in charge, company revenue has doubled. The company is well known in the community, and Wilson is a respected business leader, much like his father was. Wilson has not retained me to sell his company. At the age of 48, he has no interest in slowing down, much less selling. But Read More

When is the Bird in the Hand Worth It?

“Do you think we will ever get this deal done? Maybe I should pull back and wait another year or two to sell the company. I could sell it for more, right?” Rhonda (not her real name) is frustrated, and for good reason. The buyer had scheduled closing for April 30, and things were moving along nicely until the pandemic hit. The buyer’s due diligence team flew back to their home office on March 12, and nothing has Read More

Preparing a Board Presentation, Even If You Don’t Have a Board?

“That might be the most insightful thing I’ve heard during this awful pandemic.” Mason (not his real name) and I were recently discussing his interest in making an acquisition. He is not a client; he isn’t looking to sell his Nashville business any time soon. We met four years ago during a men’s Bible conference at the church we both attend. We meet every so often at the church coffee shop to talk about life and Read More

Turnaround Investing in a Crisis

“I wasn’t happy about my company being sold, but as CEO, it was my job to see that our shareholders got the best deal possible. We did that, so it was time to find a new career. It appears my timing was impeccable.” Dave (not his real name) is a close friend from business school. We were in each other’s weddings, and although we live in different states, we stay in touch via Facebook (a great way to share pictures Read More

This Just Sucks, But …

"I’m tired of getting emails telling me these are unprecedented times. I know that already! I’m looking for that email telling me when this will be over and what life will look like on the other side." Bobby (not his real name) was calling to tell me he had to postpone selling his business. He was so frustrated and disappointed. I felt sorry for him. Frustration is the lifeblood of this pandemic. I have clients Read More

Business Owner’s Straitjacket

IMPORTANT INTRO: I wrote the following story in 2016. A couple of weeks ago, I checked in with the client (Justin) to see how he was doing in the midst of this health crisis. At the end of the story, I’ll update you on the current status of his situation. “I just came from my financial planner’s office and it seems I'm in deep trouble. I don't think I can sell my business now.” Justin (not his real name) and I were Read More

Walking a Tightrope Blindfolded

"We were on track for our best Q1 ever, but two weeks ago, it came to a screeching halt. Do you think we should continue with our plan to sell the business this year?” Vince (not his real name) retained me six weeks ago to sell his company. He wanted to have the deal done by the end of the year so he and his wife could relocate to Arkansas to be closer to their children and grandchildren. For the first time in my Read More

Time to Ditch Your Investors?

“I have so many plans to grow my company, but my investors won’t let me do anything that jeopardizes their quarterly dividends.” Sarah (not her real name) didn’t strike me as a hard-charging entrepreneur, but in just four years, she had turned an idea into a seven-figure profit-producing machine. To launch her idea, Sarah needed capital which she raised from three individuals, each of whom bought 20% of the company. Read More

Left With Nothing But an Empty Bag

“After 15 years of work, I just wanted to leave something for my kids and grandkids. But it sounds like all I have is an empty bag.” Sandra (not her real name) was not in good health. We met at her house because getting to the office was difficult for her. But what she lacked in physical mobility, she more than made up for with mental mobility and attitude. Sandra had a big smile on her face when I walked in, and Read More

Stuck in Place

“I can’t afford to sell my business ... what am I going to do, work ‘til I die?” I hear this way too often. Here’s the scene, a business owner is ready to retire and calls me about selling their business. I’ll review three to five years of financial statements and tour the business. In the course of this I’ll learn about the company’s product/services, its customers and organization. It's not rocket science, it Read More