- Prepare for new management. As soon as you make the decision of selling a business, begin doing what you can to help the business run “on its own.” The business should not, especially now, be just you!
- Accept the financing facts. You’ll likely be financing the sale of your business since banks are traditionally unenthusiastic about loans for the purchase of most businesses.
- Make sure your own financials are accurate, detailed, and up-to-date. Get professional help, if necessary, to present yourself well “on paper.” Remember – this means seeing yourself in the same light as a prospective buyer, so rethink all those “perks” and hidden assets.
- Spruce up and pare down. Sell unused equipment and inventory. Nobody will want to pay for it – but they might worry it will get tacked on if they see it lying around. This is a good time to see what else needs a bit of spit and polish to make the best possible impression.
- Establish a realistic price for your business.
- Keep your selling plans to yourself, at least at the outset. Employees might react poorly to your “news,” and you need their stability more than ever at this crucial time.
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